Getting an opportunity to watch “Wicked” Live on Broadway is any musical lover’s dream. And indeed, it was a surreal and happy feeling to have experienced this show on stage for the first time. But I also shared this dream with someone who meant a lot to me, my dear cousin - Ate Nerisse, and having to live this dream without her was ten times more painful. It was bittersweet. I was happy, yet it felt incomplete.
It was through her that I developed my love for musicals. We were always each other’s dates to the latest productions, with Avenue Q being our favorite and the last one we would watch together. The Wicked soundtrack was just up and coming back then and she had recommended I listen to it. We made plans that once it came to Manila we were going to see it, or better yet, catch it on Broadway.
Then she was gone.
We played this soundtrack at her wake.
The song For Good that Elphaba and Glinda sing together before they go their separate ways cuts deep. They know it’s the last time they will see each other and so it’s one of the saddest, yet sweetest goodbyes.
Ate never got to say her goodbyes. One moment we thought she was going to be ok, we were already talking about colorful wigs after chemo and what we were going to do once she got better, but then the next moment her oxygen levels dropped, her condition became critical, she could no longer speak. Then we lost her.
I can’t even remember the last words we exchanged together.
That’s why Cuz, if you’re listening and reading this from Heaven, I dedicate this song to you. Every line rings true.
You would have been 45 today. The coolest, prettiest 45 year old out there. Happy Birthday! I miss you dearly!
I wish we could’ve seen this show together but I know you were there with me in spirit.
As Elphaba put it—- ”It well may be, that we will never meet again in this lifetime, so let me say before we part so much of me, is made from what I learned from you, you’ll be with me, like a handprint on my heart. And now whatever way our stories end, I know you have re-written mine by being my friend - and my Ate (older sister)- ….. Because I knew you… I have been changed for good” I love you. Always.
A few more days
A final Hi meeting
The local neighborhood bar has a quiet time between six and nine. It is a place that specializes in coffee, beer and seasonal menus. There is just enough of each for a satisfying snack and effective buzz. After the time when the laptop lids close and before the social gatherings start -- there is a sort of twilight*. Often this time is a fugitive ground rife with creative inspiration and meditative work -- of the kind that results in personal reward.*twilight may refer to civil, nautical or astronomical variety depending on your social or terrestrial condition
A man positions his mouse on the edge of his browser window. He clicks, holds and drags the viewport first left then right. The content of a video game promo micro site responds and adapts to the available space. To the man, this is more delightful than the game itself.
A man laboriously moves his piano down three levels onto the subway platform. Classic vocals and strided chords -- he played so well I swore he was blind. Oblivious to the heat on that August stage, he was most in touch with his audience -- whom he elevated with his music.
A woman should do exactly as she pleases no matter what a man may think.
As the Dalai Lama once said, "It is a time when there is much in the window, but nothing in the room."
"No one understands me," she said. Her grandmother was silent for a minute. It seemed she was searching for an answer in the star speckled sky. "But no one understands anyone in this world, darling. We are all unique. It is what gives us a sense of wonder."