Philippines

Iloilo-Tripping with Nico

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So last February was the 24th Singles for Christ International Conference (SFC ICON) in Iloilo, and as always, I was excited for it in more ways than one. Of course I was always excited about our annual conference, which is always my first vacation for the year, but I was more excited about it because the province was a big thing in Keep the Faith.

But here’s the thing: it was my first time in Iloilo. I had planned to go there several years ago – and I even had a ticket! – but I didn’t push through. Then when I was writing Keep the Faith, Nico was supposed to be just another guy in Manila, but somewhere along the way, I made him Ilonggo. I can’t remember why or how it led to that (I remember why I put the Ilonggo verse, though, haha), but it became that. But I’ve never been there, so I had to rely on research, Google Maps, and friends.

Anyway, so I finally got there last February, seven months after the book was released, so of course I christened it my “Field Trip with Nico.” Because I’m still sort of in love with this LI, and why not?

(Before I do the photo dump, in case you’re not from the Philippines and you’re unfamiliar with Iloilo, read about the lovely province here!)

First, before taking off. Of course I should have a book to read. I waited to read Keeping the Distance by Clarisse David specifically for this trip. 🙂

Then an hour later, after we’ve landed…it felt like Nico was welcoming me home? Heehee.

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It’s April and we feel Things

Who would have thought that it would become this three years ago?

When Ron asked that question sometime in the middle of that hot Sunday afternoon while we were in Pegi Waffles, I smiled. I’ve asked the same thing about other things several times (like Filipino ReaderCon, or the book club), but hearing it again for another thing just never gets old. It’s amazing what people with like-minded interests can do.

Especially like-minded romance writers and readers with lots of feelings.

So, last Sunday, April 17, was the first ever #AprilFEELSdayIt’s a celebration of romance books and authors and readers, with various activities like book selling, tarot card reading, writing and publishing Q&A, poetry reading, and the much-awaited live reading sessions from the next seasons of the #romanceclass podcast.

aprilfeelsday2
It was a hot, hot day made even hotter by the number of people that sat inside Pegi Waffles. I just realized that I hardly sat down that day – save for the time that I ate lunch, and then when all was over and we were all hanging out and waiting for everyone to leave and settle the payment. But it was fine, because the place was so packed that I didn’t have any place to sit, anyway.

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Full house! #AprilFEELSDay #romanceclass

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