Finally! After months of not having a legit ganap (except birthday celebs), the squad is finally reunited to celebrate the Christmas season together. Our different and conflicting semestral scheds got in the way of get togethers and day outs but now that the semester is over, we say hello to the term break–which means walwal is real. We’ve been complete during the recent b’day parties but (admit it or not) nothing compares to authentic gatherings–especially those that are for no apparent reasons. Perhaps, this is the best way to end the year and to celebrate the Tropa Day (which is on the 28th).

Tagaytay is probably the best place to celebrate holidays–bet nobody will argue with that. Coffee and Bulalo are both extra special in the city (plus, the fog, cold weather and hoodies). And so, for the crew’s reunion, I suggested for the day out to be in Tags (short or Tagaytay). Plus, Tags weather is made better when you’re with the best people in town and (not to mention) it’s been a while since the Tropa last went to Tags–talk about perfect timing. Things went as planned and it couldn’t get any better. With that being said, I’m recounting everything that happened during our Year Ender. Happy scrolling!

30th of December – Friday

Morning

I set up alarms to wake up early since I’m alone and home (mind you, my sleep pattern is at its worst rn). I grabbed a good breakfast to start the day–made butter toast and a cup of coffee. We then got in touch with each other through our group chat called ‘Happy Without Allie’ which is an ingeniously clever chat name, IYKWIM. The plan is to meet up at lunch time and finalize the deal. I fixed myself; wore my favorite shirt, a pair of checkered shorts and slipped on some Swoosh. After that, I had a haircut and I’m good to go.

Noon

I went to Trina’s place and shortly after, Amiel, Carlo and Gelay arrived. Gelay brought her sisters Yanna and Alyssa with her and Louie joined us–all in all, we’re 8 in the pool. We went on to catch the jeepney ride to Tags. The original plan is to go to Twin Lakes (which is at the road to Batangas) but due to traffic and transportation difficulties, we changed plans and headed to Starbucks Magallanes instead. If there are things to keep in mind during holidays, they would be 1. Traffic is horrifyingly insane in Tagaytay, 2. Tags is disappointingly a crowded place now compared to previous years and 3. A whole lot of tourists and travelers are also heading to the same place. #thestruggleisreal #hungergames

After centuries (inabot na nang siglo kakahintay sa bus lol) of waiting, we are finally able to catch the bus ride to Magallanes–the ride is long inundated by road traffic. I plugged in my ear buds and caught up with my friends’ lives and soon enough, we’ve reached the place. Luckily, there are 5 branches of Starbucks in Tags and SB Mag is not that crowded. I specifically wanted to visit this branch because of the Taal Volcano view at the back of the coffee shop–perfect if you want to chill and unwind. We arranged ourselves on 2 tables and finalize our orders.

I had a slice of S’mores and Iced Shaken Black Tea (Venti size because SB is now or never) for late lunch. At last, I was able to complete the 18 obligatory beverage stickers and I’ve redeemed my 2017 Starbucks Planner–after a month of Starbucks check ins on various branches. I’m actually planning to write a separate entry about it. #comingsoon While eating, we caught up on each other and opened conversations. Good food and good conversations would have to be my fave combination from now on. After eating, we decided to check the place and take shots (by shots, I mean photos) since the place is genuinely Instagram worthy.

Afternoon

We left the place and dropped by the nearest Max’s Restaurant which is a few blocks away. Since it’s too early to go home, we seized the day by heading straight to Ayala Malls Serin to hangout (and Gelskie’s sisters also want to visit the place). We have no plans of doing anything but to my surprise, we found ourselves at Time Zone–a usual spot that my friends and I visit in Serin (Fun Tym naman sa Rob Tag). We purchased 3 game cards–1 for Trina and Louie, 1 for the Rocillo siblings and 1 for me, Carlo and Amiel. We hit the Photo Booth to have our photos taken and printed and decided to play good games after. It was fun to play and have a good time with my squad especially the Deal or No Deal game where we had the most fun. I almost forgot that the night is creeping in due to the fun that we’ve having.

We went outside to have photos taken–photos that will constantly remind me of how fun-filled the day was. We talked in between and conversations like them won’t seem to die. I always get a good laugh after hearing stories from them; both lucky and blessed to have them as my main buddies. After a while, we left Serin and went to Olivares to catch the jeepney ride home. Again, we had teething troubles in catching the jeepney since there are also a lot of people waiting for means of transportation. Before we leave, we decided to eat chicken and calamares–my ever fave street foods.

Night

The ride home is long and as a testament to how enjoyable (and tiring at the same time) the day out is, I took a shot nap on the road and headed home not right after. It’s gratifying to have spent a day out with my squad–in celebration of the Tropa Day which also served as an awesomely fantastic Year Ender for all of us. Thank you so much Tropa! I’m thankful to have friends like you who have witnessed my ups and downs but stayed throughout the journey. (We may be incomplete at the moment but) Soon enough, things will fall into place but right now, it still feels dreamlike to have you by my side. I am proud of all of your accomplishments individually and I can’t wait to witness what college life has to offer for our friendship. Through thick and thin, you’ll always be.

Life without friends is like coffee without caffeine.

Till the next TROPAdventure! Bry. x 010217

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