November 2018 musings: 54, celebrated with gratitude

54. Kicked it off flying on Business Class on board Cathay Dragon to Hong Kong, and to Bangkok on Cathay Pacific.

I’m still on the dance floor. Not in bellbottoms and body fitting, wide-collared, brightly-colored printed top, that 70s discotheque fashion, though I may have worn something close to it. I’m still swinging to the music of life enjoying every note. At 54, I’m not stopping any time soon.

Perhaps like trends and fashion, I adapt to the new dance steps of time. I may have to summon the terpsichorean goddess though. Go with the flow. Take in the new, twirl in its excitement.

If birthdays were a disco, I am having my Studio 54 moment. A number quite appropriate for the moment. The gold, glitz and glamour of the era, at least that’s what I perceive it to be. I could get use to all the upgrades!


Flew business class from Davao to HK aboard Cathay Dragon


I kicked year 54 off with a long celebration, in different places at that: Hong Kong, Bangkok and Davao. It may have been incidental, a “tag along” affair to the main events, but I blew candles, made wishes, ate my cake, wined and dined in Cucina, Disney Resort’s World of Color, and L’ Atelier de Joel Rabochon in Hong Kong, at EmQuartier in Bangkok, a good friend’s pad back in Davao.


Blew a candle on a Mickey Mouse Cake at Disneyland in HK

Went Rabochon-ing with Nena in HK

Thai dining with Beth


Accommodations were in swanky hotels like the Marco Polo in Hong Kong and the Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel in Bangkok, both with views of the city’s famed waterways, the Victoria Harbor and Chao Phraya River. Access to the hotels’ exclusive club lounges where extended and days started with freshly brewed coffee and ended with cocktails in the evening.


Me time at Royal Orchid Sheraton by the Chao Phraya River


Back by the Chao Phraya River at Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel this time

The wining and dining was taken a mile high. It was limousine ride on business class on Cathay Dragon to Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific to Bangkok and Philippine Airlines on the way home.  The perks that came with it made traveling very comfortable—generous leg room on seats that can recline horizontally, entertainment on demand, and breezing through immigrations at the Thai airport.


Came home to the PH on Philippine Airline’s Business Class


The generosity is overwheIming. I am truly grateful. The planets were aligned and luck (or the blessings) was on my side, though I never doubted the generosity of the Universe. I asked and I received.

Like the Studio 54-ish bright lights flashed by the mirrored balls, this year’s birthday can be intoxicating, indulging. But I am holding on the things that matter most. It’s like the Swing, the 70s-born dance I grew fond of and my favorite dance to this day (I will say I dance it well on the non-professional level). Times may change and new dance steps come, but I am sticking to my dance, because like family, friends, loyalty, respect, it makes me happy.


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Also published in the SunStar Davao newspaper