Day one is entering a strange, unknown, distant place that you only see in pictures or imagine in case decisions or visualize from a collective memory of a space people conceptualize as a center of history, of power, of life. Everything is conceptual, mechanical, and transactional. Through time, you begin to own the halls; the alleys become yours; the faces are no longer detached from their respective stories; gods turn into mortals; colleague becomes family. Then a point comes when you start calling it home and the heart gets involved.
Day X comes and it’s time to look at the place for the last time. You can come back some other day but it’ll never be the same; that’s the beauty and curse of change perhaps. The universe will continue to move; people evolve; but at the end of each day, memories have been cast in stone. They will be there, like photographs and words. It will always seem, feel, hear, taste like the first time and the last time and each moment in between.
Tomorrow, I’ll be Toff the private citizen. But with this, I will always be judicial reform advocate, OCJ, Supreme Court, Filipino public servant.
(This series was featured in my Facebook Page beginning on the 10th day before I my resignation from my Manila employment became effective. This uncut version pays homage to my love affair with the capital. Not all lovers are given the chance to say goodbye. This is my attempt to chronicle her beauty. #10DaysOfManilaUncut )