Exactly two weeks from now, my son and I will go on a long trip overseas. This is what happens when members of your family choose to settle in other countries. Every reunion is a major production and requires much planning.
Everytime I talk to a friend or a sibling, I get asked: "So, did you pack already?" Pack? My four-page To Do list shows "Pack" at the bottom. Above it are stuff I have to write, edit, follow up, and errands and other stuff to do like make a dental appointment, get flu shots, file ITR, pay my SSS loan, and so on. And I've got two weeks. Oh, I forgot that I need to dye my hair and get a massage before I leave next next Friday. And meet up with friends. And have business meetings.
I look around my room and I'm overwhelmed at the clutter I've accumulated over the years. I have probably close to 60 handbags, but I only use 5 regularly. The electronic junk (can't be repaired or donated) sit on top of the overhead cabinets: a broken fax, a jurassic CPU, a nonworking AVR, etc. I have boxes of papers labeled "Sort." And a load of magazines that can fill up a car trunk; this after disposing an equal number of old magazines last year.
I've got to simplify my life after this. After all, am I not a simple person?
And so, I have resolved to:
1. Pass on magazines I've read to friends. (As a magazine journalist, I have to read, read, read, thus the monthly stash.)
2. Give away books I've read or sell them on e-bay. I realized that I don't like rereading books I've read before. I'll only keep what's dear to me.
3. Keep my portfolio of works up to date, so I don't have to keep volumes of magazines around.
4. Give away gifts I have received but cannot use.
5. Make regular visits to the junk shop to dispose of paper clutter, electronic junk, etc.
6. Find a place for things, so that paintings go on walls and not get stashed in cabinets.
7. Have photo CDs printed as soon as possible. And organize photos.
And lastly, start packing a month before a trip. :-)
BOOKS OF THE WEEK: I'm reading two books this week, and I'm both halfway through them (yes, in spite of my things to do). One is Ladies' Lunch by Gilda Cordero-Fernando and Mariel Francisco. It's a nice collection of warm personal essays about womanhood, motherhood, growing up, etc. The illustrations by E. Aguilar Cruz go well with the wonderful essays. There are recipes too, long before Frances Mayes thought of including them in Under The Tuscan Sun.
The second book I'm reading is Philip Yancey's Reaching for the Invisible God. It delves on man's quest to understand God. It brings to fore man's usual questions: Where is God? Why does He seem unavailable sometimes? Deep insights but Yancey writes in an engaging personal way.
VERSE OF THE WEEK: "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." Psalm 139:13-14