A day before the Challenge

I’ve been a good employee—I didn’t check the official site of the Makiling Challenge 7 at the office. Instead, I waited for the weekend.

Now that the word is out and the race route is revealed, I could just stare in disbelief and sigh with relief that I didn’t sign up for the 10K run. I haven’t been doing serious running and strength training for three weeks now that I don’t feel like I’m in top shape. The weather’s also affecting my mood. I really hate it when my feet get wet!

Putting the brattiness aside, let’s talk about the race route. My jaw dropped when I saw the label “Main Library” and I guess my eyes bulged when I saw “BSP Rotunda” and “St Marc’s Chapel.” These are just some of the landmarks one would see when you use the PCARRD shortcut to the main campus; it’s the route we used to take every weekend, as it would save about 20 minutes of travel time. But a driver should be adept with uphill driving.

The library
Everything about it is torture. Well, almost everything. First off, it’s a hilly walk to the library. By the time you reach the entrance, you’re already sweating. During my time (yikes, they’re right; I’m getting old!), you show your ID and your bag to the guard for inspection and you climb another set of stairs. That’s where you spot the PCs housing the database of books. Note that these PCs (during my time) didn’t use Windows. Imagine DOS. There were times I attempted to use the library cards and almost had my hand injured from the pins.

A BIO1 research at the library almost made me cry and throw tantrums. When I finally found the book I just needed from the piles of old cards, I listed down the title and aisle where I’d find the book. After countless times of browsing through the cards only to find that the books weren’t available in the shelves, this one book that I just needed was, fortunately, where I expected it to be. Hardbound and old, I opened the book and searched the index. I flipped through the pages and found to my horror that the dear pages I needed were gone and torn from the book by some selfish student!

This is just one of those horrific stories. My batchmates and I had several of these disappointing visits. There were worse visits—those days when you couldn’t sleep because of your dreaded thesis, then the library wasn’t offering much of a help because it was playing finders-keepers. Don’t forget the physical exhaustion of the climb to the library and the countless manual searching, and EQ to be patient enough with that old database.

So I’d to correct my earlier statement. Everything about the library is not torture. It’s just challenging. And I realized that library trips were a test of patience as well as physical and emotional endurance. I would return books days later than its due because I didn’t want to make that climb with hardbound books.

And I can’t believe I’m going back there to pass by the pegarao and the library. But this time, I don’t have to make that silent prayer for a fruitful visit to the library and bring home the books I need for school.

Another shower?
It’s been raining every night. I wonder if it’ll rain tomorrow. I don’t want another OROFOLS-like shower. But then again, Makiling is beautiful, rain or shine. 🙂


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