My fifth grade Religion teacher, Mrs. Gloria Maala was there.
She still looked the same prim Mrs. Maala some twenty plus
years ago, with just a bit more lines on the face. I introduced
myself and Alcuin. It's perfectly understandable she wouldn't
remember me, but it certainly helped that she knew my dad,
who also served as a lay minister along with her husband when
we still lived in Cubao.
Mr. and Mrs. Maala lived across our apartment in Egea St. She
told me of faculty members and students who'd married, migrated
or passed on. Apparently there's been a big homecoming reunion
in my old grade school alma mater last year, but I missed it because
I'd not seen any announcements of it.
I didn't know working on the church documents would be the most
tedious thing of all--no wonder a lot of couples just opt to marry
civilly! There's the baptismal certificate (recently issued, specifically
labelled FOR MARRIAGE PURPOSES), certificate of confirmation
(specifically labelled FOR MARRIAGE PURPOSES), the application
forms, the wedding banns (separate, for our separate parishes)
with an obligatory portrait of the engaged couple, the interview,
the 2 consecutive Sunday orientation, and the marriage confession
a day before the wedding. Hah.
Then I learned that Alcuin doesn't have an idea where he was baptized,
so he can secure a copy of his baptismal certificate (recently issued,
specifically labelled FOR MARRIAGE PURPOSES).
Oh no! Maybe this was why everything was going so smooth and
swiftly during the first two weeks--this was the clincher--finally, our
dead end. So Alcuin called up his dad. Thankfully, his dad remembers.
Although he doesn't remember Alcuin being confirmed yet. So Alcuin
will get confirmed on Sunday, the 10th.
Next, Alcuin and I went to the multipurpose building to pay the
reservation for the reception venue. It was so embarassing, the
money was a thousand pesos short when I handed it over to the
building administrator. I paid for the church reservation kasi, and
because I wanted to offset na lang my share against Alcuin's, I made
a mistake in the computation. The building administrator must have
silently uttered a prayer to the Santo Nino in our behalf, for our
mutual financial protection. Alcuin and I realized we still had a long
way to go in learning how to handle money together.
Because Alcuin had to interview somebody at 11am, we drove to
Meralco Avenue. It was only 10:30 when we got there, so we decided
to have an early lunch at Big Brothers. We each both had Big Brothers
with wasabi mayo topping, and then we shared a bag of onion
rings. It was then that the activity of the morning began to weigh
down on us. We were so exhausted! Then Alcuin admitted that he
was suddenly getting apprehensive about the preparations--whether
we were overlooking anything, whether we had enough time and
money between us for the wedding, etc. It was exactly what I was
feeling! I just thought that maybe we were feeling that way, because
we've started to shell out money na. Suddenly the abstract, romantic
notion was taking on concrete, practical real-life dimensions. And that,
the more preparations we were carrying out, the more we were getting
committed to sharing a life together.
Before us, suddenly, there it was: Forever--huge, looming, real,
nebulous, and very intimidating.
Which is also the same thing I could say about my thesis proposal
defense next week. Argh! Panic mode!!! My to-do list for tomorrow
is so scary, I don't even want to look at it!!!