I had an acute case of wanderlust and it's getting worse every year. Is it a good or a bad thing? Last year, I've upgraded my Lakbayan Grade to C+ by fulfilling my Wow Philippines wishlist. Unexpectedly, this year, I was able to tick off most of my Southeast Asia and the Pacific wishlist:
- Bonding with cousins during the Hot Air Balloon in Clark, Pampanga in February was exciting.
- Trekking up Mt. Pinatubo, Capas Tarlac with my soon to be in-law in February was breathtaking.
- Diving with pelagic (sharks, napoleon wrasse etc) in Palau, Micronesia in March was a whole new world.
- Trying out my new toy: Panasonic GF1 in Boracay in April was lovely.
- Conquered the waters and locals of Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia in May was superb.
- Got a ten year US visa in July even I have to intention of going there soon.
- Sardines and Thresher Shark overload in Moalboal, Cebu last July was fulfilling.
- Backpacking Japan in August was an experience.
- Autumn in South Korea in October was sweet.
- Business trip to Bangkok, Thailand in November was an eyeopener.
- Foregone a trip to Davao in December was a good decision.
- Stopover trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in December was luxurious.
- Leisurely trip to Siem Reap in December was heartwarming.
I still have too many travel journals to write about. One thing is for sure, I'm loving those stamps on my passport!
In between, work life has been a great challenge. A big decision had to be made, hoping that the benefits will outweigh the risks. Next year will be a year to beat. With a big new project on hand, I have to play superwoman and be wanderlust no more. I hope I can pull it off with the rest of the team.
It has also been a tough year for my family. Serious health issues had been popping every so often for the past year. First my uncle's spinal surgery, then my aunt's fall and hyper acidity attacks, then my uncle's impending kidney transplant, now my dad's post surgery issues.
As of this writing, it is his second day in the Coronary Care Unit after having been moved from the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). He was in the ICU for five days after suffering irregular heartbeat during and after a three hour raptured appendicitis surgery. The doctors say he is at high risk of getting a stroke if things don't normalize.
This happened when I was away from home after Christmas. I was all too jittery everytime my phone rang, I get updates from my siblings through text messages and emails. I tried to rebook my flight home but can't. In times like these, every hour counts. While waiting for my transit flight home, I got a call from dad. After the short conversation, I felt very sentimental and can't help but shed some tears at the airport! He's even first to ask how's my trip rather than me asking him how's he's coping. He's simply the best, he's my strength.
Today, we visited him twice, it was a relief to see him in a good disposition. At around 6 in the evening, while we were chatting with him, his heart monitor kept alarming. His heart stopped for a split second then his heartrate instantly became normal (from a level of hundred plus to sixty-six). The cardiologist even came back on a New Year's eve to verify the ECG, he can't believe it himself. OMG, a miracle just happened before my eyes.
Thank you Lord, I can welcome the new year with a bigger smile. Hopefully he recovers fully. I believe in miracles, do you?