It’s three in the morning in Manila, I’ve only had a few hours of sleep after a very busy weekend, and I still have to stay up for several more hours for work. Strangely enough, I’m not that sleepy. It must be some leftover high after the outreach program at the Home for the Golden Gays.
The fund-raising went better than our initial estimate and in behalf of PinoyG4M, I am thanking everyone who gave their aid for our elderly sisters. I wish all the sponsors could have seen the smiles of the golden gays when we presented our gifts; they made all the effort from the last few weeks worth it.
Special mention should be given to the team that made everything happen: The indefatigable Nex and PJ of Akei, as well as the rest of the Salenda siblings (whom I owe another pot of pasta). Juna and his wonderful graphics, Acee, and especially Lanchie for letting us bully him into handling the collected funds for the event. Jerome and Erik for ensuring that we could give the 2 sacks of rice we promised. Alex and the beautiful bouquets he bought from Dangwa. Markee the amazing host, Leo and my boyfriend Bern who put up with me when I got annoyingly impatient.
There are also the other volunteers who joined us in entertaining our Lolas: Annabs and Sky, Marko of UP Babaylan, Alver, Athan, Ethan, Tan-tan and Glen, and Page, who missed the program but still came to show support.
While I wrote that we entertained the golden gays, the truth is that they were the ones who entertained us with their hospitality and fabulousness. Growing up gay at a time when people are more hostile against homosexuals could break a person, but the members of the Home are not broken. When we had the beauty contest earlier, one of the judges asked one of the Lolas what was the thing he regrets the most in his life. The contestant gave a very confident answer: “I have no regrets.”
When I think of the many times I complained of petty inconveniences, it was very humbling to hear the stories of people who had not had an easy life but still managed to find happiness where they could. Like another contestant from the beauty contest, I wish I could remain as radiant and fabulous when I reach eighty-one. Heck, I wish I could grow to reach eighty-one.
That was the first part of Akei and PinoyG4M’s project to help the Home for the Golden Gays. We still have several unfinished long-term activities for the Home, but we had a great start which makes us excited to complete our other activities.
And, man, I still have to upload this afternoon’s photos.