Friday, October 18, 2002

I was tapped awake again this morning at 8am by mom, saying the driver’s here to teach me driving again. I was puzzled ‘cause big sis told me that I’m not taking driving lessons this week because the driver shall take mom and lil sis to nova. Now mom’s saying that they’ll commute so they don’t need him at all.

Turns out that dad suggested big sis to stay home while the driver takes the two to nova. But big sis wants to go to Batangas, while mom doesn’t want to have a driver ‘cause they plan to overnight. Hmm, conflicting goals.

Anyway, it’s too late for me to learn driving anyway ‘cause the sun would be too hot too soon. So big sis hired the driver to take her to Batangas while mom and lil sis commutes. I just got ready to go out and get my student driver’s permit.

Mom lent me the originals for my birth certificates and gave me some money to pay the phone bills before she left. After my shower I braided my wet hair, pulled on a tank top and denim jeans, and a denim jacket. I had a breakfast of instant beef noodle soup before I hauled my brown backpack and went on my way.

I walked to the corner where I could catch a Tanauan jeep to LTO, then looked for a Xerox machine there. They said it wasn’t available yet so they suggested I go to the one across the street. It cost me P2 each. Rip-off.

I crossed the street again back to the LTO office and went back up the stairs where I eventually asked a girl how I could get my student permit. She asked for my birth certificate (I gave her the one from the hospital. I thought the one from census is too dark in the copy) and gave me a form to fill up. She then stapled the papers together and told me to go to Window 1. I passed the papers there, where I was told to wait for my name to be called.

The wait wasn’t as long as I expected. But I didn’t expect them to take my picture either. I thought they don’t need pics when you’re below the non-prof level, but I learned the hard way when I hurriedly put my braid to the side, wishing I had time to let my hair down instead. I also wondered if it would be better if I took off the jacket.

The lady then told me that it’s already 11am so I might have to come back for it after lunch break. I paid P170 for the whole shebang and asked them what I was supposed to do next. She said the next step is to go to the cashier. I was unsure if I should wait in front or sit down somewhere. But since there weren’t any vacant seats I was left without much choice.

Not too long after my name was called again and the lady was a bit surprised when I popped up in front of her, since I have been waiting all that time anyway. She fixed up the papers and gave me some receipts and told me to proceed to the Window 3. This time I found vacant seats, probably because it’s almost lunchtime. When I went up to the window I was given this little piece of sorta-stiff paper stapled to a bigger paper.

That was my license. I looked at the picture: as I expected, my eyes looked like I was shocked out of my wits, my skin was too shiny, and I wished like hell that I put on some rouge. I could hear my mom and sisters saying, “We told you so!” because I rarely bothered to put on makeup. Well, at least my lips are still shiny. And I was glad I kept my jacket on.

On the jeep back to San Pablo I found the expensive Xerox machine left me one peso short for my fare. Okay wait… I found three quarters… nuts! Still a quarter short : 6 I asked the kid sitting beside me if she could spare a quarter (embarrassing!). She dug around her pocket ‘til she pulled out an old P10 bill and gave it to me. I gave her my 3 P1 and 3 25-cent coins and thanked her.

I got off at the market place and walked to our store. Good, I wasn’t late. And the people followed our advice to make preparations for the rush hour, and things went more smoothly than before. I had lunch of giniling but managed to eat a little. It soon got pretty warm that I took off the jacket. I was somehow feeling a bit ill but I just concentrated on getting the job done.

I’m enjoying my helping out at the store more because the people I work with are more comfortable with me now, and I’m more confident with managing what I can. I separated the money from the cash register for the bills to pay so it became easier for us to decide which accounts to prioritise and stuff.

Everybody’s counting on me for decision making because the rest of the family’s out. I’m glad I’m more confident with how I did, without having to call or text mom. I was supposed to have an employee pay the phone bills, but she had to do the groceries which is out of the way, so I decided to do it myself so I’d know how. Besides, it’s on the way home.

I paid bills for rice and soda deliveries and gave the manager a cash advance, and took the rest of the money home with me. It’s pretty far; I should’ve ridden on a jeep, but I walked from the market place to the PLDT office, where I approached one of the ladies to ask how to pay the bills. She asked for the bill statements that they send over the mail, and then gave me receipts that I was supposed to bring to the cashier.

There she summed them all up, and I paid for it. And it’s done. I walked out and hailed a jeep home. The reason I walked was that I’d pay double if I rode a jeep to PLDT. And besides, the walk made me feel better and cleared my head. I got home and peeled off the sweaty clothes, assured that the house was empty. In a cool cotton housedress I walked over to my pc and played…

I still can’t figure out how to install “warcraft3” so I uninstalled it and tried figuring out how to install “battle realms” instead. It took me an hour to install it, and then I bungled it and took me another half-hour to fix it (am I a newbie or what?). After testing and repairing it thrice I managed to make a working desktop shortcut. Whew! Ahehehe!

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