Have you ever been in a situation that everything seems to be way out of your planned schedule? Waking up one morning thinking that the day would be just fine when all of a sudden it turned upside down? I have.
It was a Saturday dawn when I arrived home from work and immediately packed my luggage for a weekend meeting in Laguna (Luzon). It was already 2 a.m. and my flight was at 6 a.m. so I decided not to sleep instead I entertained myself by watching a television series. I tried not to sleep fearing that I might go on with the feeling and forget about my flight (yet it didn’t work cause I still unconsciously had a nap). I got freshen up, ate my baby back ribs (Casa Verde) with rice breakfast and a sip of warm milk. I bid good bye to my sister (who joined me in my short vigil) and went off to see a taxi.
“Oh thank God!” I said to myself when a taxi passed not too long after I left home (normally I would have to walk about 200 meters to go out of the highway and wait about 20 minutes for taxi especially at that time).
“Airport please” I said and so we headed there. Feeling a little dizzy and yawning often, I thought of sleeping during the hour drive to the airport and so I checked the driver’s condition just to make sure he’s well (and able to drive at that hour). Unfortunately for me the driver seemed so energetic and had been doing “head bang” (like what rockers do) ironic to the mellow music being played on the radio!
“Okay, maybe he’s just trying to wake himself” I told myself trying to be confident and calm with the situation. Not too long, along a crossing (road) the traffic light signaled to red (which means stop) but the driver got on to the wrong lane (we’re supposed to go left) and went on driving with the red signal on!!! Thank God there’s not much of vehicles at that time (or we could have been dragged in an accident and I couldn’t catch my flight and my meeting and so on).
“Strike two!” I said. I gave the driver a chance, not until he hit strike three! I heard a loud “bang” from behind the vehicle and I wonder if it was a flat wheel or something else. “This is far worst than drinking three cups of black coffee!”
Finally I asked the driver to check his wheels but first asked if he heard the blast. “Wala day (nothing miss)” he said.
“Hello! Mr. driver! please check—-PLEASE!” I said on my own but of course with calmness and politeness I asked him. And so we stopped. I was right, we have flat wheels and it’s major FLAT!
We are in the middle of the north reclamation area with less access to vacant taxis and with little time before the check-in counter of Cebu Pacific will close.
So sleepy, tired, frustrated, and disappointed I cried to God hoping that He will make a way. And YES He did!
A kind taxi driver, with passengers on, stopped over and offered to bring me to the airport (since it is hopeless to find a vacant taxi and I was running out of time). Having doubt that it might be a scam or something, I still accepted the offer but I was wide awake to prepare for anything that might happen (I actually didn’t know I was with strangers maybe because of my mixed emotions). The driver first brought the original passengers to their destination and went to the airport.
It was my first time to be inside a taxi with two total strangers (except for the driver–which is as always–stranger ^_^). It’s not normal here in Cebu to share one taxi with others and so I feel a bit awkward and although I wanted to befriend them, I just couldn’t talk or whatsoever with my situation (please understand me).
“Thank you LORD!” I arrived on time to check in and drink a cup of latte, waiting for my boarding announcement. “Ting ding…ting ding” the airport clerk signaled ready to announce something. “Flight 5J…bound for Manila—is delayed due to the late arrival of the aircraft. Instead of 6 a.m. your flight will be moved to 7:30 a.m….thank you.”
“Yeah right! What a morning!” My heart broke in fear that if I won’t arrive on time, the person I was about to meet (our resource speaker) might not push through with the appointment since I don’t have her contact number and stuff.
Again I was left in the benches seeing other passengers leaving as their flights were called. Two batches of flights passed and I was still sitting in my second bench area taking a nap. “Flight 5J… bound for Manila is ready for boarding…” At last!
“It is still morning, things might turn good in the afternoon.” I positively told myself as an encouragement despite the series of negative events. “Nothing bad will happen.”
Yet piles of unexpected out of this world “not my day” ways happened, like us finding for the bus terminal (with all the countless terminals in Metro Manila along the EDSA highway), missed the bus trip, figuring the map to the location (since none of us has been to the venue of the meeting and in no knowledge where it is except for the instruction provided), and so on…
I thanked God for giving me an excellent sense of direction that brought us safe to the venue. We ate lunch (since it is a four-hour drive from Manila to Pila, Laguna) and prepared for the electoral forum in the afternoon. Not in my right mind on that day, I was assigned to moderate the forum. Everything went well until the giving of the certificate of appreciation. Instead of saying “Let us thank the members of the panel for ….” I said: “Let us thank the JUDGES for…” What was that? Saying those embarrassing words in front of two dozens or so people, who are intellectually alert and have heard the tiniest single word I have spoken!
“What else could happen?” I thought, “where are those flashy encouraging words I told myself? What more to expect? WAAAAAHHHH!!!” One thing I know for sure, it was NOT my day!
And so to make things right, I asked God for help…”This is beyond me,” I said. God opened my eyes to the things unknown and unnoticed to me since I was focused on myself for the past hours. I gathered my experiences from that morning until the sun sets on its final descend that day. I closed my ears and focused on Him. Then I felt at peace and from then on I have enjoyed every mistakes and surprising opportunities coming in—not to mention that I misread my flight time back to Cebu… I though 17 hours is 3 p.m. instead of 5 p.m. HAHAHAHA!!!!
A week after while I was sitting in Robinson’s place’s food court, a fine woman sat beside me and without even knowing each other, she opened up to me and shared her BAD day from the moment she woke up until that afternoon… Smiling, because I was at her position earlier and I know how it feels to have your plans ruined, and with enthusiasm and full of joy I told her my testimony and encouraged her to see the day through with a POSITIVE HEART.