Learning from two inuman

While I was in high school, I have this scroll hung up in my room: 

If we drink, we get drunk

If we get drunk, we fall asleep

If we fall asleep, we don’t sin

If we don’t sin, we go to heaven

So let’s all drink and go to heaven.

I never knew what it meant then (just like any other framed messages we once had) and I never knew that someday, it will be one of my favorite poems. I don’t know who put it up on my cabinet’s door: if I get the clue from the word drink, it might have been my older brother or father; if I get the clue from the last word, heaven, it could have been my mother. Whoever it was, I owe you one.

***

Yesterday, I had another drinking session in my wife’s place in Batangas. I was with the usual suspects, my brother in-laws. The session went on as predictable as it always was – bottle of beer, pitcher, tagay glass, pulutan (finger foods) and stories that goes along with all of it. Everything went perfectly well as if a script was followed but not until before everyone called it a night. One of my in-laws suddenly said, “Cris, sensya ka na, lagi kaming ganito, maingay…at pansin ko tahimik ka lang lagi (I apologize, if we are always like this, noisy, but this is just the way we are…and by the way, I always notice that you don’t speak up a lot).” It was a drunken remark, but I smiled back and answered nevertheless.

Kuya, ok lang sa akin, sa totoo lang gusto ko lagi nakikinig sa usapan kasi natututo ako (It’s okay, in fact, I like listening to such conversations as I always learn from it),” was my reply, drunken as well, but well meant. It is every time that I get the chance to join them in their inuman (drinking) sessions that I get to know them better and especially how they live their everyday lives; that no matter how humble it is, they seem to be contented at the end of each day. More so, I always secretly admire how some of them, married and with kids, and with just enough income still manages to make both ends meet. All these interactions make me put myself in their shoes, sober or not, and ask myself, “kaya ko ba maging katulad nila (can I be just like them)?”

Well, until now, I can’t seem to honestly answer that, although I hope I will, soon enough, with a confident yes. I know it’s a tall order for me to adjust to that level of contentment, but I think I need to before it’s too late. They say that man is never contented, but with each drinking session I spend with my in-laws I really beg to disagree because if there’s someone I’m so envy at right now, it’s not the rich but it’s the contented. Cheers to that.

***

I had another drinking session just last Tuesday but this time it’s just the complete opposite of the Batangas setting in so many ways. I was with several perfect strangers, classy place and perfect ambiance with free good food and beer. I was in Rockwell Club Makati.

What’s more interesting about that session was that it’s a class activity wherein we were allowed by our professor to stay with our group, have dinner outside the campus but with just a couple of conditions: discuss our life book among our group mates and just come back sober.

I was with a diverse group made up of a military major, someone close to the Manila mayor, a Chinese expat, a BPO personnel (who sponsored the free dinner) and a bum – well, that would be me. It was quite an interesting exchange that although there’s an obvious difference between one another’s story each was able to somehow relate to it – the struggles, the challenges, new experiences, having connections, etc. (It was during the class wrap up that we all learned what was common – Feelings. Simple yet, very well true).

An hour and a half later we were back to the classroom with me following our professor’s first condition but violating the first. Hahaha. Isn’t MBA fun?

 

 

(Posted from Sn. Vicente, Batangas)

 

Mood: 3/10 Honks!

 

 

 

 

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