Sunday, December 04, 2005

The 2005 Ateneo de Mla Homecoming

Where can you see TG Limcaoco (My Ayala), Al Panlilio (PLDT Global), Toti Casino (PCS), Jim Ayson (philmusic), Jinggoy Estrada, Reli German, Gary Lising, Ed Sazon, Mon Paterno (Credit Suisse), Ito Ramirez (PLDT), or even Bishop Mylo Vergara all letting their hair down as they watch Asia Agcaoili and some of the Viva hot babes perform on stage - The annual Ateneo Homecoming!

I was mulling on whether to attend this year's gathering but hesitant early on, because of the week's hectic sked so I needed so much rest. However, at this age, you sometimes get that nostalgic feeling, longing to be with good old schoolmates, compounded by the fact that I had been receiving a couple of text messages asking if I will be attending the annual reunion in loyola. I rested the whole day saturday so I will have the strength to enjoy the gathering which usually lasts till past midnight.

Top photo from left Coll78 group
photo on stage, school performers,
Lady Eagles. Next level from left:
coll78 table with Fr. Nebres, some
batchmates, hands raised while the
graduation song is sung, TG and I.
Third level from left: Al Panlilio and
HS 80 hands raised while singing the
song, me with former officemates, last
from left: batch of Gary Lising. last
rightmost, coll78 group photo on stage.

I wanted to be early so that I can hear the mass at the church of Gesu. It was first saturday and I would usually go to mass at greenbelt, don bosco or malate church. If I do so however I will be caught in a terrible traffic going to Ateneo. I fetched Clarisse at Executive Heights and we
proceeded to the Ateneo grounds. We got in during the homily and sat beside Sonia Araneta and Tina Ribas. The whole center aisle was filled with the Golden jubilarians (batch of Erap) while the right pews were filled with the HS silver jubilarians led by TG Limcaoco where Jinggoy was also included. I learned that this was the reason why San Miguel was a major sponsor. Edwin's C2 beverage was therefore banned being a Gokongwei product. As always SMART is the major sponsor specially now that its Al Panlilio's batch celebrating the silver jubilee.

I couldnt find any of the College 80 batch (mitchie, mon paterno, shankee etc) during the mass. Apparently they all got drunkand were tired the night before, the traditional gala celebration so they all were late and just proceeded to the covered court for the program.

It was drizzling when we arrived in church but it stopped when the mass ended. We were then able to join the traditional procession led by Our Lady's carossa.

When we reached the High School covered courts, I then realized it was a well organized homecoming. Each major sponsor were assigned rooms where they can showcase their products. Registration was a breeze compared to our time where it was crazy.

There were mini stages besides the main one so that program transition was smooth. Each jubilarian class had a presentation and were accorded equal honors by the organizing high school batch. Compared to other years where the program was filled with blaring bands so it was quite difficult to have long conversation, this year was filled with dance numbers, less bands, more pleasant songs (not acid rock). Obvious though was the choice of sexy FHM performers such as the viva hot babes and Asia Agcaoili who left the golden jubilarians speechless (see collage photo).

HS '80, the organizing batch includes TG Limcaoco, Al Panlilio, Jinggoy Estrada, Raffy Jose, Duke Eustaquio, among others and I liked their very informative website. The ones I saw on stage when the golden jubilarians were called were Reli German, Ed Sazon and I was informed that this was the batch of former president Erap Estrada. Prior to this, the jubilarian batch of Gary Lising performed some comedy number.

I came across the table of my former officemates which included Nardy Tiongson, Gas delos Santos, Jun Isidro who were all joined later by Jun Bernardino. I think they belonged to the HS 60s batch (or is it college?).

Was surprised to find Toti Casino (college batch 79) , a colleague in the IT industry and even Jim Ayson (college batch 83). We never discussed our schools in the past so they were equally suprised to find out I was an Atenean.

Unlike our time (2 years ago), the souvenir program was aplenty, everyone took home a copy (or even two). I can remember that last 2003, many people got upset since they never got a copy of the souvenir booklet. This is of course very precious for jubilarians for one will never know whether they will still be on this earth when the next one comes along.

Only one table for our batch was reserved but more arrived so another table had to be pulled and we had to move towards the side to accomodate the bigger group.

The first thing we did upon arrival at the covered courts was to find the table then go straight to the food for we were famished. It was just weird since many of us lined up at Teriyaki boy hoping to order some rice toppings. Apparently they didnt serve rice, only ebi tempura and some sushi so one had to line up again at Dencio's just to purchase rice. Tina gave me her receipt so I can claim both our orders at Teriyaki boy while she lined up at Dencio's. We also checked out the menu of Pancake expecting their famous pan chicken with rice, roast chicken or beef, but what they had was just mini tacos and something else not worth ordering.

When the teriyaki boy staff was still completing our order, I told them that I will just grab some drinks on the other stall and will be back in a minute. When I came back, the food we ordered was gone! It seemed they had to give them to other irate customers. I think they were just disorganized. Of course what do you expect? I raised hell so the supervisor graciously rushed another order. When I left, you can hear two more people raising their voice asking what happened to their food :) This happens each year. I guess it is really a gargantuan task just organizing the food to feed thousands of ateneans. Henry Totanes was in charge this year.

It seems many of the stalls ran out of food fast (an annual occurence). Later on though they were able to replenish so some hungry souls like me, lined up this time at Hotshots. First time I got to try their grilled burger and it tasted good. The drinks were mostly soda, beer and water. After one Coke light I really preferred to drink something lighter like tea. Fortunately, Shankee Miranda (college batch 80) called me to ask if I wanted some C2 iced tea which they brought in secretly and of course I said yes! A few hours later, I wanted to have another bottle but it was gone. Why? They were castigated since its a competitor of the major sponsor.

Met Mon at the table of college batch 80 who reminded me about the ACIL centennial celebration next week. Many of their batch didnt wear their official t shirt since it was only one size and just plain white. Shankee was complaining to me about the tshirt. Thats the reason I told her that two years ago, I volunteered to find the shirt and ordered from the smallest to the biggest size to please everyone. You need to be proud to wear it and it is a pity if not everyone will just because of the color, design or size.

The High School jubilarians had great tshirt quality and design. The year prior to our silver jubilee Chiqui Lara and I observed the various designs of the jubilarian t shirt to give us an idea of how to do it the following year. Almost all of them had creative tshirt designs unlike this year.

Ronnie Rivera was gracious enough to bring the newly printed 78 banner and placed it near our tables. Since the left stage was very near our table, I thought of calling everyone for a photo shoot together with the banner of course. I heard earlier that they didnt want the stage to be used for photos since the program was still going on. No harm though if we did it fast and of course we did it! Unfortunately Tina Ribas already left that time and Benjie Laza and Sonia Araneta was nowhere in site. Boy Ramos rushed after we took a couple of shots but it was another camera that was used so I dont have that copy. Maybe I will ask ronnie or mandy if the complete group photo is with them. The earlier photos though had had tina but I don't remember Sonia joining our batch table. Luckily we were all able to have a photo with Fr. Nebres.

As far as I can recall, below are the people of college 78 who attended: 1. Maan Tolentino 2. Clarisse Gener 3. Tina Ribas 4. Sonia Araneta 5. Mandy Pascual 6. Aster Sotto 7. Ed Wenceslao 8. Winnie Jimenez 9. Ronnie Rivera 10. Sonny Clutario 11. Joel Limjap 12. Eddie Dayrit 13. Pam Lazatin 14. Vic Santillan 15. Freddy Gemperle 16. Edwin Totanes 17. Cynch Totanes 18. Yoyo Bongco 19. Boy Ramos 20. Jovie Sison 21. Joey Cuyegkeng 22. Achoot Cuyegkeng 23. Mon Jarencio 24. Benjie Laza 25. Marcy Rivera

Other colleagues who arrived were Mito Pablo(79), Juny Lim (77), Enteng Francisco (79). I would like to thank Greg Jarencio (batch early 70s?) for taking our photos on stage.

I asked Cynch to take my photo with TG who is a good friend. We walked to the center where the organizing batch tables were. TG pulled me to the center where the pom pom girls were performing so it would have been a great shot! Unfortunately, I was not able to teach Cynch how to widen the lens so what she took was a close up shot.

Mandy, Clarisse and I left past 11pm since they were hungry and wanted to eat out. I suggested makati since its nearer the south. We ended up at Fridays but went home upset. That will be covered on another blog though.

The bigger photos could be seen in my other website

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