A friend is a gift you give yourself.

... and in this case, I know I have spoiled myself way too much!

Last Saturday night was all kinds of awesome as I was able to see my oldest friends. We met in second grade and though we haven't really become close friends right away, we certainly bonded when we were already in the latter part of Elementary and during our four years in High School.

Except for Glen, I've known these guys since we were eight! :D
(From left to right: Ric, me, Camille, Chester, Glen, Third, Neil)
I can't believe the last time I saw them was last May! Work and other commitments have always stood in the way of us catching up. Actually we weren't really complete that night but since we know it is virtually impossible for us to be complete (as one is in Canada. Hello Christian!) we were willing to take what we can get. This get-together actually coincided with HSBC Direct's (the department I work for) Black and White-themed Christmas Party but I opted to see my friends instead.

We missed you Dianne, Niel, Jella, Aiza, Christian, and Jerome!
Isn't it obvious that I was feeling too giddy?
We agreed to meet at SM Mall of Asia and my oh my, some things really never change. The guys were late for an hour that Camille and I had to eat at Sbarro first while waiting for them as we were already starving! When they finally arrived though, all was forgotten in a flurry of hellos, how are yous, and playful bantering.

Teta and Mela
(They call me Teta, and Mela is Camille's other nickname, as her real name is Carmela)
The two of us were part of The Triplets when we were still COCC trainees in high school.  The other one, Jella, wasn't able to come.
We were called Triplets because our CAT officers said we look like each other! :D
Ric treated us to dinner at Burgoo.

Ribs and Shrimp Platter, Fish 'n Chips, and Chicken Steak
My Dalandan Shake, Mud Pie, Oreo Cheesecake, and American Fruit Salad
It was a lovely meal :) After eating, we walked towards the sea-side area where we spent more time reminiscing and laughing at our young selves.

Funny how we feel like we didn't really change at all.
Ric, our lord :D
By the way, our group is jokingly called Barkada ni Ric (barkada means "group of friends") because we say that Ric is the mastermind of everything :D
At around midnight, we went to Top Grill in Makati where we continued swapping stories, eating, and merry-making. Neil had to go home already though as he still had work the next day.

We looked like we were the youngest kids in the bar. Fact.
Time passes really quickly when you're having fun. I got home to my apartment at 5am the next day and stayed in bed until 1pm. :)

I will forever love these people.
We have changed a lot, yes. Back then all we thought about were stuff like homework, school projects, group presentations, the Student Council, making it to the Top Ten, PE, and whether that hottie likes us back or not. But now, aside from reminiscing those days, our conversations were also dotted with topics like taxes, work issues, politics, and that person-with-no-soul who broke our hearts. Sigh Life, why do you have to go by so fast?

We have changed a lot, yes, but these guys are still the people I became close friends with years ago. They saw me when I still have ugly crooked teeth pre-puberty, they saw me wearing braces, they saw me with retainers. They were there when the tragedy of having our house burned struck, and were the first to offer assistance. They were there when I first had my young heart broken, and when I had my first boyfriend. They were there when I dreaded PE, and when the nerd in me got excited at results in Science experiments. They've always been there, and I know that even though we don't see one another as much as we'd like, they're just there when I need them. I know no matter what happens, whichever path I choose to lead on the future, I'll always have their backs and they'll always have mine. I am Krissy, but for them I'll always be Teta, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

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