At the Principal’s Office (aka home office) Richard, Ryan and Maya (yes kasali na siya sa usapan this time) were discussing the Philippine Aviation Society (PAS) 30th anniversary celebration.
“Brod we should tap the ideas of the young aviation professionals. Mas okay yun mga suggestions nila. We definitely wouldn’t want the affair to be boring.”
“Ay oo Sweetheart. Mas okay yun kasi kung yung mga kaedad nina Mr. Ventura, Mr. Javier and magsusuggest, siguradong nakakaantok ang anniversary nyo.”
She was grinning.
Ricky smirked, raising his left eyebrow.
“And what are you implying? Na boring ideas ko?”
Maya forgot that Ricky was actually near the age of Mr. Ventura and Mr. Javier.
“Ay sorry Sweetheart! Ang ibig kong sabihin yun ibang tao, tama yung ibang mag susuggest. Atsaka hindi ka naman pwede magbigay ng ideas kasi ikaw nga yun presidente ng PAS. Hindi pwede yun.”
“You’re just saying that pero you meant differently kanina.”
“Naku Sweetheart hindi ah. Atsaka kahit na medyo konti lang ang agwat ng edad nina Mr. Ventura sa’yo, ang layo ng hitsura nyo.”
She went near Ricky.
“Tingnan mo, gwapo, sobrang bango. Parang kaedad mo lang si Luke.”
Then she pinched his cheeks, not minding that Ryan was there.
“Sweetheart. Stop that. Nakakahiya kay Ryan.”
“Naku brod okay lang ako. Ituloy nyo lang.”
Ryan was shaking his head amused at the two.
Their discussion went on.
Ricky was the newly elected President of the Philippine Aviation Society. His achievements and contribution to the aviation industry didn’t go unnoticed that’s why he was unanimously elected.
He was all set to implement new reforms and introduce new technology in the aviation industry.
His being elected also coincided with the PAS 30th Anniversary. It is a very much anticipated event. All Aviation companies of the country really spend and prepare for this annual celebration.
Now that it’s actually celebrating the 30th year, it was expected to be the best ever.
Richard, though always a no-nonsense guy and very confident in business wasn’t all equipped to handle celebration, parties and the like. When they hold celebrations at Lim Aviation Services, he usually hires a planner.
He wanted to do it this time but the officers of PAS declined his suggestion. They said that it would be much better to tap the ideas of those who are really members of the aviation industry.
They decided to get representatives from every company to be able to voice out their own opinions on how the 30th anniversary should be celebrated.
After months of planning and preparation with the young and driven aviation professionals, they had the consensus to hold a week-long celebration with the following activities : a concert featuring some of the musically-inclined members of the aviation society; an exhibit of the airplane models of the different airline companies; an outdoor airshow; various lectures from prominent personalities of the aviation industry and lastly a pageant to showcase the good looking and very talented young men and women of the PAS. The pageant would be included in the culmination night where a special dinner will be held for everyone.
Days before the week-long anniversary, Maya was visiting Ricky in his office with Sky in tow. Sunshine was left with her Ate Nikki, Ate Abby and Kuya Luke at an ice cream shop nearby. Maya has to bring Sky coz he’s been having tantrums.
She visited to bring food for Ricky since she’s aware that due to the busy preparations for the anniversary and also the daily schedule at LAI and LAS, her husband mught not be able to eat lunch. She wants to take care of him and be sure that he doesn’t skip meals.
With Luke in tow, she met Atty. Ryan who has just left Ricky’s office.
“Hi Maya. Sky… ”
“Ryan, si Ricky?”
“Nandun sa office nya. May kausap sa phone. Sobrang busy ngayon dito Maya.”
“Ah oo nga kaya nagdala ako ng lunch para kumain talaga siya. Halika Ryan, sumabay ka na kay Ricky.”
“Ah Maya thank you na lang pero nagmamadali rin ako kasi may hearing akong hinahabol.”
“Ah o, sige. Ingat Ryan.”
“Ah Maya, siyanga pala, dadating mamaya yun incharge sa lecture series, yun sa anniversary celebration. Si Ricky kasi, he’ll be a speaker of one of the topics. Pakifill up na lang ng form at attach na lang ng vitae nya. For introduction purposes lang yun. Hindi na kasi maasikaso ni Liza kasi she has to go sa hangar. Wala pa rin nga eh.”
“Sure Ryan ako na bahala. Tulungan ko na lang sila. Papatulugin ko lang to doon sa office ni Ricky.”
Sky was fidgeting in Maya’s arms.
“Bye Maya, Bye Sky.”
Maya entered Ricky’s office.
Ricky was still on his phone but he ended the call and immediately rushed to his wife and son.
He engulfed both of them in a very tight embrace that Sky had to wiggle out of his mom’s arms.
“So what brings my very beautiful wife and son here?” He said after giving both Maya and Sky a kiss.
“Sweetheart dinalhan kita ng lunch kasi alam ko wala ka ng time magpabili. Kain ka na muna sweetheart.”
Ricky smiled widely at Maya.
“Halika nga. I need a hug again para mawala pagod ko.”
Maya went to her husband’s arms and was again engulfed in a hug while Sky was bouncing on his dad’s sofa.
“Naku Sweetheart kunin ko na si Sky at baka makabasag pa. Kain ka na muna.”
After having lunch, Ricky resumes his busy work taking calls, meeting with engineers, reviewing and signing papers.
Maya pitied her husband for he looked so stressed and tired. Se decided to stay in his office to assist him in whatever way she can. Luke called to inform her that he, Nikki, Abby and Sunshine already went home so she opted to stay with Ricky. She doesn’t have anything to do anyway.
A couple of hours passed Sky slept and Maya was able to take some phone calls, fixed some of Ricky’s documents and made him coffee.
It was already 4pm when Sky woke up and since he wasn’t sleeping in his room, he went into his tantrum mode, crying and only wanting to be carried by his mom.
It was while Maya was carrying a crying Sky that Ms. Pacheco came rushing to Ricky’s office.
She seemed in a hurry .
“O hi Maya! wala si Liza? i need to get kasi the file of the representative of LAS and LAI. Ready na ba?”
“Ay Ma’m Pacheco, opo I had it ready na. Teka nandito po.”
She handed her the folder containing Ricky’s Vitae.
“Ah Ma’m yun form po? Ako na magfifillup kasi wala si Liza”
“Yun form daw po…”
“Ah not needed na Maya. Here pakisulat na lang ng complete name sa list Ako na bahala sa form. This would suffice. O sige I have to go na. Nagmamadali kasi I have to meet Emman and some people who will decorate the venue.”
“Okay po Ma’m Pacheco.” She wrote Richard’s name and bid goodbye to Ms. Pacheco.
“Bye Maya, bye Sky.”
That evening, Maya got a call from Ms. Pacheco.
“Maya si Mr. Lim ba talaga ang representative ng LAS and LAI? Akala ko si Engr. Gutierrez.”
“Si Ricky po Ma’m. Ibinilin yan sakin ni Atty Ryan. Bakit po?”
“Ah wala naman. I never thought he would agree.”
“Magaling yan si Ricky sa ganyan Ma’m. He has a great command sa audience atsaka, hihihi, ang charming naman ng asawa ko so sure ako hindi mabobore yun makikinig.”
“True Maya. I’m sure matutuwa yun mga tao. Ako din naeexcite sa mga magaganap. Please just tell Mr. Lim to practice.”
“Si Ms. Pacheco talaga. He doesn’t need to practice.”
“Ikaw talaga. Ewan ko sa’yo Maya. Buti at naconvince nyo si Mr. Lim. Sige goodnight.”
“Sige po Ma’m.”
“Sino yun Sweetheart?”
“Ah si Ms. Pacheco. Kinuha kasi nya yun files mo for the lecture.”
“Oh… oo nga pala, I have to give a lecture on the Green MRO.”
“Kayang kaya mo yan Sweetheart, ikaw pa.”
“Hmmm too much confidence on your husband huh?”
“Siyempre. At di mo na kailangan magpractice.”
“So if I wont practice, ano na lang ang gagawin ko, or natin tonight?”
Ricky wiggled his eyebrows.
“Sweetheart ha! Pagod ka kaya.”
“No I’m not! Atsaka mas makakatulog tayo ng mahimbing after.”
Shrieks of Maya and chuckles of Ricky were heard at the confines of their room.
Then it became quiet as the couple spent the night showing their love for each other.
The first four days of the PAS Anniversary celebration were very successful and highly attended by prominent personalities. It gave a boost to the aviation society. They all admired the leadership of Richard Lim.
The fifth day of the week-long PAS 30th anniversary celebration is the time for socials, for meeting people and catching up with old colleagues.
Food, wine and music matched the well-decorated venue apt for the aviation theme. Emman, Maya’s former room-mate and friend was in-charge of the decorations that made Maya very proud.
As the night progressed, the much awaited event was about to start. It was highly anticipated that many of the VIPs were in attendance and they even secured the best seats near the stage.
The pageant of PAS was the idea of the Time Airways group. They believed that it would be great to showcase most of the beautiful and handsome FAs, Pilots, Engineers of the aviation society.
It was just for fun. They didnt even rehearse for they no longer had time to do it with their tight schedule.
Besides most of the participants were the FA’s so they really dont need to rehearse. They just reminded all participants to practice on their own.
Richard was with the Philippine Aviation Society table with his fellow officers while the LAS and LAI team was a few tables away from them.
Richard was constantly glancing at his wife. They are silently exchanging glances and smiles which evidently showed how they admired and loved each other.
As the program progressed, Maya was already fidgeting on her seat. She can’t believe what she accidentally did. She just found out a few minutes ago from her friend Emman.
The hosts of the pageant were are now announcing the participants from various companies. All eyes were on the stage as one by one, the participants rose from their respective seats to go to the stage.
“And from, Lim Aviation Services and Lim Aviation Institute, their CEO-President himself and our very own PAS president, Mr. Richard Lim.”
Nanlaki ang mata ni Ricky. He couldn’t believe what he heard.
All eyes were on him. Everyone was excited, offering him smiles, applauding him.
He immediately sought for his wife who was averting her eyes from him.
Ryan and Liza were equally shocked as well.
Maya was bowing her head and was now teary eyed for putting her husband in this very awkward situation. She thought that Ms. Pacheco was in charge of the lecture series so she submitted Ricky’s name to her. It now made sense as to why Ms. Pacheco was so surprised days ago.
Emman was right. Si Ricky nga yun pinakainaabangan ng mga tao. When her husband’s name was announced, everyone was up on their toes cheering for him.
They couldn’t believe that the elusive, stern, no-nonsense Mr. Lim would allow himself to be part of the pageant.
But everyone was ecstatic.
Drowned by the noise, the postive prodding of people, Ricky was faced with a big dilemma.
He would definitely disappoint a lot of people if he backs-out.
He would embarrass the LAI and LAS and himself as well. He didnt want to deprive the crowd of the excitement they are feeling.
Though not putting much attention to his physical attributes, Ricky was very much aware that he is capable of making ladies, women and some men swoon.
These people are among the crowd now.
They were highly anticipating his participation in the pageant.
He glanced at Maya again and he was sure that Maya was engulfed in a very unpleasant feeling now.
He didn’t want Maya to feel bad or guilty so with all the courage he has, he stood up and joined in the stage.
Everyone was cheering again louder this time as Richard Lim went up the stage. He borrowed the microphone from the hosts.
Ryan and Liza were worriedly anticipating what he will be saying. Maya couldn’t even look at him.
Nahihiya siya at naguguilty kay Ricky.
“Good evening everyone! I hope you are all enjoying the night and the food.
There is a very big misunderstanding that’s why I’m here in front of you now.
I’m not sure how it happened but I am certain that I never agreed to join the pageant. I believe that this is for our young members.”
Sighs of disappointment were heard from the crowd.
“But since I dont want to dampen our happy mood tonight, okay, i agree to join. Count me in! Pero be kind to me ha!”
Laughter were heard from the crowd. They were even cheering his name.
“I also would join not as a contestant. Unfair sakin, ang babata ng kasali. Anong laban ko sa kanila.” He tried to joke.
Emman instantly provided his costumes which were not hard to find coz Ricky’s good looks alone would suffice.
He was not included in the proper contest per se for it would definitely be unfair for the others.
He joined the ramp modelling in his business attire and his white coveralls eliciting shrieks from the ladies and women and some gays in the crowd.
Then he sang two ballads much to the amusement of the crowd as well. For the question and answer, he took the role as the host.
All the while Maya was with Emman and Liza assisting him but they are not talking.
Maya is sure that despite his seemingly cool acceptance of what happened, that he is mad, annoyed.
Ricky was a nervous wreck all throughout the pageant but he managed to put up a brave front, not allowing himself to back out.
The cheers of people and his love for Maya were enough encouragement for him to do it.
Now on their way home
“Sweetheart sorry na.” Nagungulit si Maya
Ricky was tight-lipped and quiet.
“Atsaka malay ko ba na yun mga sasali sa pageant ang pakay ni Ms. Pacheco at ililista nya.”
“You should have read it kasi muna.” He has the impatient tone.
“Eh Sweetheart karga ko si Sky ng nilapitan ako ni Ms. Pacheco. Hindi ko na naklaro.”
“Then if you are carrying Sky, you should have not listed my name kasi hindi mo pa nga nababasa. Malay mo, list na pala yun ng mga idedeport sa ibang bansa.”
“Ay ang oa mo Sweetheart. Si Ms Pacheco kaya yun. At bakit ka naman idedeport, aber?”
He was annoyed that Maya doesn’t get the point he is driving at and even finds the whole thing amusing.
He shook his head.
“Akala ko Sweetheart bibigyan ng meal stub yun mga nakalista.”
“Meal stub!?!” Asar na talaga si Ricky. He feels that ginugoodtime siya ni Maya.
“Meal stub, yun pangclaim ng pagkain.” Maya continued.
“Maya!!! May catered dinner di ba and why would there be a meal stub. Ano yun feeding program ng dswd?” He was gritting his teeth in annoyance.
“Sige na Sweetheart sorry na. Okay naman kanina di ba. Tuwang tuwa nga sila. Ikaw yun pinakaaabangan nila dun. Napasaya mo lahat Sweetheart.”
She said in a giddy voice while snaking her arms around his muscular biceps.
“They’re happy. I am not!”
“Ay ang KJ mo Sweetheart, hindi ka game!”
“Maya, Im not the head of PAS to play games. We do serious stuff.”
“Oo nga kaso isang gabi lang naman yun. Ibigay mo na sa kanila.”
“Binigay ko na nga di ba? and I’m totally humiliated by it.”
“Hep hep hep Mr. Lim Bakit ka humiliated eh ang galing galing mo nga kanina. Parang enjoy na enjoy ka.”
Maya was really tuwang tuwa and also tawang tawa at Ricky’s predicament a few hours ago.
“Hindi ako nagenjoy Maya. And i totally dislike that those middle-aged women na board of directors ng JJ Aviation were eyeing me as if I’m a prey. They’re ogling at me. Nakakakilabot ha!”
“Naku ang Sweetheart ko talaga, madamot.”
“And why is that so? Bakit ako naging madamot?”
“Kasi you dont want to share yun kagwapuhan mo sa iba. Kita mo di ba, kilig na kilig sila sa’yo, hihihi.” Maya was finding the entire thing funny.
“And you’re okay with it? You’re okay na ishare ako sa kanila?” He looked at her incredulously.
“Sweetheart oo naman. I’m okay with it. Atsaka hanggang tingin lang naman sila eh.”
“You’re okay na tinitingnan nila at halos hubaran ang asawa mo?”
“Oa ka talaga Sweetheart. Pa’no ka naman huhubaran eh nasa stage ka, sila nakaupo lang at sa age nila di na sila makakapunta ng madalian sa stage.”
Maya laughed again. She knows what Ricky was talking about as she witnessed how many of the women among the audience were totally glaring at him. But mas gusto nyang asarin si Ricky so patay-malisya pa rin siya to Ricky’s consternation.
“Aghhh! Ang hirap mo namang kausap Maya. Matutulog na lang nga ako.”
Ricky was really pikon na kay Maya.
“Sweetheart sige na sorry na nga.”
Richard just closed his eyes without uttering anything.
At times like this, when Richard remains quiet, madaling mapikon at maiyak si Maya.
Kinukulit nya si Ricky for she knows that he was actually awake and just pretending to close his eyes.
She doesn’t want to be treated coldly. She wants an argument coz she finds it amusing to banter with Ricky especially since most of the time, he easily gives in and abruptly forgives her antics, kalokohan, kapalpakans.
But Ricky remained unnerved this time. Hindi na nya kinikibo si Maya while she tried to snuggle in his arms.
Pikon na si Maya not getting any reaction from Ricky. She was now in tears as she tried to hide her face in Ricky’s chest. he felt his shirt get wet and she looked at Maya to find her eyes filled with tears.
“O bakit umiiyak ka?”
“Nakakaasar ka kasi. Nagsosorry na nga ako.”
“So ako na yun may kasalanan ngayon? Maya remember ikaw yun mga atraso sakin.
“Kanina oo pero ngayon ikaw na.” She mumbled while furiously wiping her wet cheeks with her hands.
Richard’s Chinito eyes grew big. Maiisahan na naman siya ni Maya just because she cried.
He has to think on how to benefit from their current situation na hindi naman siya lugi.
“Sige kasalanan ko that I did not forgive you agad though we both know that forgiveness is earned not forced upon.”
She stared at him with her doe-shaped eyes. Sa sarili nya, madali na siyang patawarin ni Ricky.
She smiled inwardly happy that di siya natitiis ni Ricky.
“Pero Maya, may conditions ako before I forgive you totally.”
“Oo conditions para naman it wouldn’t be unfair to me.”
“Yes kasi di ba, it was your fault na napasali ako sa pageant and got embarrassed. Tapos you said sorry. Now you’re demanding na iforgive agad kita and you even cried when I didn’t. See how unfair that is.”
Oo nga naman. It was always Ricky who gives in, Maya thought.
“O sige Ricky, anong conditions mo?” She bravely asked him.
“Sure ka ha? No backing out.”
“Oo naman, kaya ko yan.” She put on a brave and confident front.
“Okay since pinagawa mo sakin yun mga kanina infront of many people, you also have to do it.”
This means Maya has to do ramp modelling, sing, and do a question and answer thing.
Natawa si Maya. How could she do it eh super busy sila with work. Ricky would definitely forget about it eventually.
“Oo ba. Kelan ko gagawin?”
“Tonight sa bedroom natin. Pero since ako lang audience mo, ilelevel up natin para fair.”
Ricky was grinning mischievously.
“At pano naman natin gagawin yun, aber?”
“Well, you have to do everything… (he whispers in her ear) without any clothes on.”
Then he winked naughtily at her.
“Sweetheart, ano ka ba!” She shrieked and pinched Richard’s side.
“Non negotiable na yan ha Maya. Di na kita pagbibigyan.”
Actually, Maya was feeling giddy, kilig, flustered with Ricky’s suggestion but she could do it. She would do it for him.
“Oh sige Sweetheart, mamayang gabi pagdating natin sa bahay, gagawin ko yan.”
She bravely said.
“Naked ha!” Richard forgot to whisper it to her ear out of excitement.
“Ssshhh Sweetheart ang lakas ng boses mo. Maririnig tayo ni Mang Lem. Malalaman na ang naughty mo.”
She giggled. He chuckled.
“Don’t worry Sweetheart. Mang Lem always focuses on his driving that he surely doesn’t pay attention to what we are discussing. Di ba Mang Lem?”
“Oo brod, si Mang Lem nakafocus sa pagdrive pero ako, nadidistract na sainyong dalawa!”
They realized that it was Ryan who was driving the car home. Mang Lem went ahead earlier to bring Manang Fe and the kids home.
Namula si Maya and nahiya si Ricky. Ryan heard everything they said.
“Ikaw kasi Ricky eh!”
“Anong ako? Ikaw jan eh.”
And another round of argument began….
Ryan just shook his head totally amused at his best friend and his wife.