I have a challenge for You…are you ready?
First, let me tell you a short story about a missed opportunity.
When we moved to Manila I said I would not get complacent like I had back home. You know that embarrassment when visitors come to your town and rave about that place you’ve never been. That shame you feel that you do not know the in’s and out’s of your own town? Well my plan was not to do that while we are here and it is easy to find the motivation because we are on the clock. This is not a forever gig; we don’t just have ‘all the time in the world’.
Somehow though, I have slowed down. Day to day life takes over, stuff goes on and I have started to settle in a bit too much. This was evidenced on Friday night. While our menfolk are out of town my friend L-Bug and I decided to hit some night markets in BGC with the kids. The Mercato Markets on the corner of 7th, off 25th Street. Thing is we were early so we just went into High Street to kill some time and let the children run wild. We talked about ‘that thing’ we’ve seen for the last goodness knows how many months at the end of the street. Outside Pottery Barn, the marquis are there, a big fence is around it and it seems to come alive at night. For months I have seen it as I have shopped in the area and wondered what it is. Yet I did not venture forth to find out. Friday night we decided since we were here, that we would go, and wow.
The Gourmand Market is what we found. A European inspired night market that had it all going on. Amazing food, glamorous setting, live groovy music, a funky relaxed vibe and good drinks to go with it. We looked at each other and said WTF, how have we allowed ourselves to miss out on this! Never mind, as we chowed down on incredible food – the roast pork shoulder, well I tried to but BB just wanted it all to himself. As we clinked our icy cold bottles of pear cider – a rare find in these parts and a favourite for both of us, we decided we would bring our menfolk back here the following weekend. We had to share this with them. We talked about how much they would love this, they would kick back with beer, chat about man stuff, the kids would play as they were that night and we would eat more gorgeous food and roll out drunk on pear cider.
There was one small problem. This was the last weekend of the market.
Just like that it was like I woke from a sleep. I had become what I vowed I wouldn’t. We had missed an opportunity to have some fun, fantastic evenings with friends. As we walked around taking it all in, I had been dreaming about letting our whole tribe know about this and arrange to all meet up. Let’s bring picnic blankets to put down on the patch of grass available, ‘yes!’ exclaimed L-Bug. A group of expats outdoors, enjoying life the way we would back in our home countries. For a few glorious moments my heart was fluttering with so much excitement. This was a dream of mine, a way to bring community together. But I was too late.
Okay, sure there are other night markets. The thing is, the location of this one, right on High Street in BGC meant that people in my tribe might actually come to it. It is a very central location. Plus, the European theme was a draw card. Not everyone enjoys the ‘local’ experience. If I had mentioned Pear Cider, well, enough said really.
So here is my challenge. Don’t wait. We all do it. I was one of the worst back home that’s why I vowed not to be like that here. Yet here I am writing these words. Think about a place to go, a tour you have heard about you thought once ‘gee that would be good to do’. Now, go and book it in for next weekend. Do it. Don’t wait. Go to that place, go to that gallery, museum, that bushwalk, picnic spot, country town. Do the foodie walking tour of your hometown. Do the double decker tour, if you have one. I always talked about doing that back home in Perth and I never did. Go to those markets you heard about. Explore where you live. It doesn’t matter if it turns out to be a fizzer, at least you did it. Now you know. But you know what; in all likelihood you are going to have such an awesome day. Feel that excitement of stepping out of your usual routine, and then do it again the next weekend.
Don’t forget to drop me a comment or a private message telling me all about it. I’d love to hear about your adventures.