Thursday, October 23, 2014

Becoming a senior citizen

I turned 60 more than two weeks ago, after coming back from Bangkok, Thailand, where I attended a conference on "Small Christian Communities and New Evangelization." After being back in Baclaran for a day, I immediately left for Iligan on October 4. The last time I celebrated my birthday in my hometown was in 1988 - 26 years ago - before I left for higher studies. As I reach 60, I decided to celebrate it with my siblings. I also wanted to visit the grave of my parents to thank them.

So, at 3 pm on October 6 after celebrating Mass in the chapel, I started my 60 km birthday run/walk - from the Redemptorist house in Tibanga to Naawan and back, dropping by the memorial park where I lit a candle at my parents' grave on my way back to Iligan. In took me over twelve hours. In the evening, we had a birthday party in my sister, Inday's house, attended by my siblings and cousins.

Very early the following morning, I took the bus for Butuan. I was scheduled to give a talk on "The Church of the Poor and BECs" to the National Social Action General Assembly. I was back in Manila on October 8. After a couple of days, I left for Dumaguete to attend the Visayas Region Pastoral Assembly - a gathering of 18 dioceses from the Visayas  -where I was a guest speaker.

So now, I am finally back in Manila for  couple of weeks. I just got my senior citizen's ID which I was able to use last night for the belated birthday celebration with Edgar & Tina Valenzuela and their children - Eric and Myra - in an Italian Restaurant.

I may be a senior citizen but I really don't feel that old. I have started training for a 1,800 km Solo Bike Ride for Climate and for the Victims of Typhoon Yolanda, Pablo and Sendong (Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao) in December. I am also thinking of doing a run/walk adventure along the Aguinaldo Trail (West to East Luzon Traverse). sometime next year.

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