I drove to Lucena for my mother and sister. I believe it was my first time to drive that far, with no Marc to guide me. I enjoyed every bit of independence and the feeling that for once, I’m relying on my instincts. Felt quite proud that instead of me feeling guilty about Marc doing most of the driving, my mother felt worried that I was doing all the driving.
We went there for passport renewal (where no appointment is needed so long as you line up as early as 2am) only to find out their policies have changed. I do not want to dwell on that terrible bit. I want to share the bit where I found a nice Filipiniana section at SM Lucena’s National Book Store, where I bought the titles above. Compared to NBS Sta. Rosa and Festival Mall, they have great titles there (I saw Mina Esguerra titles and two titles by Bebang Siy, plus a range of local graphic novels). I found Titser Pangkalawakan by Joselito D. Delos Reyes (matagal ko na itong hinahanap) and finally had the money to buy more books by Merlinda Bobis. When I got home, I saw an announcement on my newsfeed: Locust Girl wins Christina Stead Prize for fiction.
And there were books by Edgar Samar (Janus Silang series and 101 Kagila-gilalas na Nilalang) and other good titles. There were around 4 Nick Joaquin collections there, too! Another happy find at Lucena’s Pacific Mall is their Book Sale, where Marvel comics are sold P100 lower than most Book Sale branches. And then, the P35-P65 Hard Bound bin gave me these:
We stayed in a nice hotel and ate at nice restaurants. Jea kept me company while I drive. She mispronounced almost all the towns: Calendaria (instead of Candelaria), she read Tiaong as Chowng and somehow mispronounced Sariaya. I enjoyed the stories and jokes we shared. I consider it a really nice family trip, the good parts outnumbered the bad ones.