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Kei Yoshikawa

She reminds you of the wishes

Short Stories, Whimsical Wanderings

It’s not so much that she wants to run away. She just wishes she could feel better — no, she could be better — in a place which isn’t here. Wherever here is. It’s always the wrong place anyway.

She’s afraid of the sky. And when you ask her why, she’d always say
“it just looks so heavy. I’m afraid that one day it will fall down on me and crush me.

You could never figure out what she stared at when she propped her pretty bony elbows on that white windowsill and stayed that way for hours on end (the paint was chipped but she said that only made it more beautiful, more like home, even though she never quite understood what that word meant), ignoring the clock and her surroundings.

It was like she had faded out into a world of her own. And then one day you figured out that she wasn’t looking up at that dreaded sky or down at the ground which was too solid for her tastes. She always had this feeling that it would swallow her whole if she let her guard down, and early on already, you were worried that she would crack under the strain of all her anxieties and restrictions. She wasn’t looking at the gently swaying strong-trunked trees either, no. Nor at the pavement or at the house across the street. If you had asked her, you know she would have told you that there was no house across the street. She either saw too far or not far enough. This is the kind of confusion she lives in, only for her, it make perfect sense.

Some would call her delusional, but to you that is the only thing which makes her real.

You were never one to be superficial, until you met her. She taught you all about skirts and bracelets and never seeing past appearances. More importantly, she taught you that everything was just an appearance. Make-up and souls are exactly the same: perishable. But after you’d spent some time with her, what you really started to notice were her wide, baby-blue eyes. They shine like light bulbs or stars or waves on the sea. Something distant and lovely in an empty, stereotypical kind of way. Like her feelings, probably, or her clothes. But not her thoughts, and definitely not her words. She really has a way with words, either that or they have a way with her. It’s hard to tell sometimes.

Usually because it’s so devastatingly easy.

You used to love her pale, slender wrists. There were strands of her soul in them, you thought. Because they were so perfect, but so very fragile. It took you longer than it should have to realize that they were as far from perfect as it’s possible to get. (“Unless you’re an angel,” she would say. She doesn’t like angels, probably because she had to fall to become one.) It took you longer than it should have to realize that they were much closer to perfect than it was healthy to get. For anyone. Even for her.

And it occurred to you then that she’s just like you. And me. And everyone else. Because we all have our windows which we stare out of, and either we’re focused on the ghostly, tragic reflection of our all-too-familiar face on the glass, or we’re gazing too far out into the distance, into things which aren’t even there. And in either case we’re too captivated by our own thoughts to see what’s right in front of us. It was obvious, you tell yourself over and over again, obvious that she was too thin, that she wasn’t natural, that the slightest breath of wind would suffice to knock her over. But for months you didn’t know. You still blame yourself for it. You feel so powerless because you are so powerless. There is no control when it comes to dust.

And it scares you, it really does. Because you didn’t realize how alive she was until you found out that she’s actually dying.

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Happy

Life

I am happy. Relationships with mine and Ander’s friends are more tight-knit and mature than ever (and not just those friends everyone knows about). I have figured out people’s true intentions and have cautioned myself away from the few toxic ones. I am closer than comfort ever to Ander’s family and relatives, as he is with mine, that we even joke about switching families now. My freelance “job” is seriously raking it in within the past year, and I earn more than enough to cover all the bills, a few wants, and some — all while giving me the luxury of doing whatever else I want, in my own time. Ander is finally showing interest in helping his dad manage their company — something I’ve been pushing him to do the past few years. We also have XX trips booked within the next year on top of that. I am happy. I do want to list down all the reasons as to why but I really can’t due to the freedom the internet has given to a lot of people. Sa ‘min na lang ‘yong iba.

So here I go, pretty much telling the world that, yes, we are #blessed, not just with worldly things, but with experience, love, life, and genuine happiness.

————

Disclaimer: I know I mentioned about not liking “maintstream blogging” before. I am being a bit hypocritical now about my stance on generic photographs overlaid with pa-deep quotes. Am I cool now?

The (Mis)adventure of the Kitty and the Bunny

Life, Rants

The last weekend was probably one of the longest weekends (figuratively, of course) I have ever spent in my life. Ander and I arrived at the bunny‘s house at half past noon on Saturday. We’ve already been travelling 4 hours by then, and we’re about to go on another 2-hour trip with her family and relatives to Nasugbu in a nearby province, which is known for its nice beaches. Ander and I are like extended extended extended members of her family, you see. I’ve been in a lot of family things with them. But this is not just another one of them.

The weather was not the best, as an untimely storm made landfall that weekend. Nonetheless, we had fun froliciking in the huge waves, catching up, laughing at all her dad’s jokes, looking after the kids, just getting our hands on all the food — albeit functioning on 4 hours of sleep. Sunday night, and we were ready to head home.

Now the normal route home from Nasugbu is around 78km (48 miles) via Tagaytay and would take slightly less than two hours. Her cousin this time, suggested another route for some scenic views for everyone. He can’t be blamed though, the trip would have been magnificent …had it not been at night …and storming. Everything was pitch black.

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My Mind is a Universe

Soliloquies

I have been trying to give this site a fresh, new look these past few days as you can see from this pink and gold thing I have going on. You know that with every major change I do, I also update my pages. Today, I got stuck on my About pages… again. By stuck I don’t mean I don’t have anything else to say about myself, but rather I don’t know how much to tell. This has always plagued me. I wanted to keep it short. I really did. I wanted to be somehow discerning about what I spill online, especially since they can be read by virtually everyone, most of whom I barely even know in real life. But words are my thing, and I find it hard to keep the thoughts from pouring out sometimes.

But the galaxy I speak, is just one of the one hundred billion galaxies in the universe that is me.

So despite knowing so much, there’s still so much more you don’t and you never will. I just thought you ought to know that.

Not Just Construction Workers

Feminism, Rants

I think I could probably write a book of all the weird things men do or love that make absolutely zero sense to me – farting under the covers, the attraction to girl-on-girl action, and naming body parts (just to name a few).

But what has continued to blow my mind more than anything over the last several years is why men feel the need to hoot and holler things to women on the street. Why do they think it’s socially acceptable to objectify and disrespect women in the guise of — what they think is a — compliment? I’ll be all hot and sweaty, with my hair pulled up in a ratty ponytail, minding my own business while walking the dog down the street… then I’ll feel the presence of a car slowing down beside me. I hear “Hey baby, where you headed?”, “Woot woot”, or perhaps even more puzzling is this sudden-breaking-out-into-a-song thing they love to do. I once ignored an obtrusive catcaller, and was called something along the lines of a “bitch” for doing so. I flipped the guy off. “You’re not immediately interested in me, you must be easy.” Love the logic there.

Has this EVER worked for men? Have there EVER been any successful relationships that have started from this sort of contact? Is there a woman out there that would respond to this with a “Oh hello! I really appreciated the way you so sweetly called out to me from your car. No, I wasn’t aware of how nice my ass looked today, so thanks for pointing it out! Would you like to get a drink?” Are there any statistics on this? If not, can we start keeping statistics on this? I feel like this is something we need to track.

For a middle-aged man to do this while driving alone (probably on his way to deliver his truckload of perishable goodies), is just downright weird. What is the freakin point? You know, I can almost understand or excuse this if it is done by a carload full of young men. Oh ha ha, it’s so funny… and they all laugh and exchange high-fives. To be fair, the cat calling (in my book) has gone done significantly during the past few years. My teenage years to early twenties were the worst. I guess being in a five-year relationship helped, since I rarely have to walk the streets alone nowadays. Not that I’m trying to justify this stuff, because I think it’s wrong. But I am starting to think that maybe it’s something primal…you know, whoever grunts the loudest gets the hottest cavewomen?

Primal or not, it would be awesome if men could control their urge to shout pleasantries while I’m PICKING UP DOG POOP.

C’est le par(ad)is

Life

Paris (and Europe in general) has always been my dream. Love this quote on the Christmas card my cousin, who is now based in France, sent me:

“Ajouter deux lettres à Paris: c’est le Paradis”
~Jules Renard

Translated, it says: Add two letters to Paris: This is Paradis.

Ate, I’ll see you in Paris indeed.

Woman

Feminism

“She is free in her wildness, she is a wanderess, a drop of free water. She knows nothing of borders and cares nothing for rules or customs. ‘Time’ for her isn’t something to fight against. Her life flows clean, with passion, like fresh water.”

~Roman Payne


Happy International Women’s Day

MY blog, MY rules

Rants

This is my blog and I get to write about whatever the hell I want. I get to decide whether an entry follows a certain “template” or not. I get to decide to add images or not (and I get to decide whether to use my own or not.) So spare me all those non-existent rules about blogging — I am not a celebrity or a journalist. I don’t even go around and brand myself a blogger despite having been doing this since I was thirteen. I know the ins-and-outs of “mainstream blogging” and I don’t want that. I am not marketing a product. I am not being sponsored. Just like what my introduction says, I just occasionally write about random odds and ends. In case you haven’t absorbed it yet, this is my personal page.

I don’t want a niched blog. I don’t need eye-catching entries. I just want to write.

You young bloods go ahead and make a collage about life lately, or take a generic hipster photograph overlaid with an equally-hipster pa-deep quote, for all I care.

Meanwhile, I will continue writing poems and stories, make one-sentence posts, rattle on about my stance on something, or just vent out my (sometimes strong) opinions and thoughts — because that’s what blogging is to me…

and it’s none of your effing business.

Past vs. Present Me

Life

Today, Mai asked me copies of those “tags” that were all the rage in Facebook (and the blogging world) years ago so she could answer them herself. I couldn’t help but cringe while reading some. Did those answers really come from me? How would I react to those questions now?

I’m answering some of those tags again, after more than 5 years, just to see how much my perspectives and opinions have changed compared to when I was but a nineteen-year-old girl.

1. Why aren’t you with the person you were first in love with?
Past me said: “Because he was an asshole.”
Present me says: “Because he was not the right person for me.”

That same asshole is now married with kids. So, maybe, just maybe, it’s not because he’s an asshole, but because I don’t see an asshole being the right person for me. Relationships are beautiful things whether they go ‘right’ or ‘wrong.’ It’s such an opportunity to grow as a human being.

PS. He may be married, but he is still an asshole

2. What’s the best feeling in the world?
Past me said: “I just realized that it is actually waking up inside the arms of the person you love.”
Present me says: “Genuine happiness.”

As in the purest, sincerest feeling of happiness. Doesn’t matter if it comes from that little bit of sunshine on your skin after feeling all triste from all the rain and gloomy days, or if it’s from waking up inside the arms of the person you love. Just that genuine feeling of happiness.

3. What’s something you really want right now, to be honest?
Past me said: “My OWN car!”
Present me says: “Contentment.”

All around me, I see these happy people enjoying their happy days, talking to their happy friends and going to their happy places. I just really want to know how they do it, how it seems that everyone around me have life all figured out and here I am, still couldn’t be utterly satisfied about every little thing. People seem to be perfectly happy with how much — or less — they have.

I don’t really need much in this life that I’m not willing to work for and get for myself, but sometimes I just feel like too much of a dreamer and wished life were so much simpler for me.

4. Name something you CANNOT wait for
Past me said: “The right guy ?”
Present me says: “Start my own family.”

It’s hard to believe that 6 years ago, my priority was still finding the right guy. I have been in bad relationships in the past and it was perfectly understandable why I said that. After all, I was young then — at least younger than I am now.

Now, that right guy every girl’s been dying to have hasn’t been my problem for the past 4 years. I could say I got lucky. What I cannot wait for now is to start my own family. Hashtag quarterlifecrisis.

5. Where were you at 11:47PM last night?
Past me said: “Walking to *a coffeeshop*. It’s what my ‘sent items’ says.”
Present me says: At home, cuddled up with my cats and the man I am going to marry.”

If I were, by any chance, walking to some coffeeshop, I would sure be walking alongside that man or a friend, not walking alone for a late night coffee date.

6. What is something you’ve realized recently?
Past me said: “That I have already forgotten how good it felt to be hugged by someone dear.”
Present me says: “That I have already forgotten how good it felt to be hugged by someone dear.”

7. Where do you see yourself in the next 2 years?
Past me said: “Prolly working. Completely independent I hope.”
Present me says: “Couldn’t tell what I’d be doing by then, but I’m sure that in 2 years, I will be a better person than I was today.”

(And is probably already married)

8. If you had one whole day to yourself, what would you do?
Past me said: “Pig out. Surf the net. Go shopping. That’s what I always do. lol”
Present me says: “Pig out, go shopping, go watch a movie, go get a whole body massage and grab a glass (or two) of wine or a cup (or two) of tea to cap it off.”

9. Will tomorrow be better than today?
Past me said: “I don’t think so. Today is a greaaat day but it depends ?”
Present me says: “I’ll make it, like I always do.”

10. What is one thing you wish you could change about your life?
Past me said: “Nothing. I am already blessed!?”
Present me says: “Nothing. I am already blessed!?”

To know who we are as a person, we need to have some idea of who we have been. And, for better or worse, our remembered life stories is a pretty good guide to what we will do tomorrow. When I cast back to an event from my past – let’s say the first time I ever swam backstroke unaided in the sea – I don’t just conjure up dates and times and places. I do much more than that. Thanks to my past self I’ve come out the other side with a renewed sense of who I am. I’ve learned not to be ashamed of who I was, instead I’ve chosen to embrace that person, learn what I needed to and then continue growing into the person I want to be.

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