My trusty tires gave up on me and I had no choice but to have them replaced at my favorite service center. I was supposed to make an early start but my insomnia was again at its full mode last night and I woke up still feeling groggy at 8am feeling disoriented. I flipped my phone open and quickly scrolled to my calendar settings and saw it was October 25, Saturday. Realizing that I was kind of late with my appointment I hurriedly grabbed my bath towel and took a quick shower. After putting on some light make up I was speeding away with my trusty compact car careful not to go over the speed limit of eighty kilometers per hour as I still was using my spare tire that sort of looked like a tire for a Harley Davidson instead of a Hyundai Getz.

When I arrived in Manila I got lost twice. I was on the verge of crying but I stopped and mentally chided myself for being a cry baby. It wasn’t because I was scared. I actually wished for someone to be there at that moment. He knows how to navigate Manila and I realized I depended too much on him whenever we had to bring the car to the service center.

After plenty of wrong turns I decided to call the Service Center staff and humbly asked for directions but even then I still got lost but after an hour I got there safely. I was mentally congratulating myself for not violating any traffic rules or being flagged down by a traffic police.

The service personnel in-charged however informed me that it will take 3 hours to have all the tires changed. What was I supposed to do then? Lucky for me a newly opened mall right in front of the service center was the answer to my dilemma.

I carefully crossed the street observing that the shops inside were so few however I was sincerely hoping that the mall has a cinema. Unfortunately it had none so I had no choice but to kill my time window shopping.

I spent thirty minutes in each store looking around when I was about to enter the third store, my stomach was grumbling. It was already 2pm and I cannot deny the pang of hunger that I felt so gave in to my human weakness and was hovering in front the five restaurants available. I decided to get inside Tokyo Tokyo frustration building up inside me.

I haven’t eaten rice for almost three months now and most of Tokyo Tokyo’s menu were rice meals and on sumo sizes. So I settled for a California Maki and a sumo sized red iced tea.

After my meager lunch, I decided again to window shop this time inside National Bookstore. I lingered there for almost an hour browsing each aisle for any books that caught my interest. I reminded myself to buy a calling card holder before I went back to the service center.

As I was silently browsing around, it was when my gaze caught the book bound titles of Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys a feeling of nostalgia swept over me.

I had this intense urge to touch the books. I slowly walked over to the shelves where it was neatly stacked to each other.

These novels were my favorites during my elementary years. I devoured books then like there was no tomorrow. It was at that time I honed my speed reading skills.

I was so engrossed with what I was feeling then that I realized I liked the giddiness I’d feel when I would retreat into the world where that book that I was reading would bring me.

The images were so vivid that I would frequently day dream about it either in class or when I do my boring chores that time.

And what hit me was it was so easy to retreat to these fantasies that my mind would create when I read these books. I had a conclusion then that whatever personality I have now where greatly influenced with what I read.

My resilient personality was brought about by the fact that it was easy for me to block off my pain whenever I am engrossed with a book or a movie or a soap opera.

Books especially were like antiseptics or painkillers to the wounds created by the harshness of life’s realities for me.

I can easily adapt or adjust just as long as I have something to read. I can block the pain of a heartache or grief of a loss if my mind was wrapped into a perfectly exciting novel.

I have taken for granted reading for a long time. I was so busy being an adult that I forgot the simple things that were really important to me. As always even from the beginning, just one.



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