12 Days of Reconnection, Day 10: Openness

After several attempts at meeting up, my old classmate from college and I finally saw each other again after a little more than 30 years. On this 10th day of my 12-day instant vacation, I made another reconnection that had me reflecting on openness.

I have to admit I was cold to the idea of meeting up with her because we weren’t close back in college, so there’s really nothing much to catch up on. But she was relentless way before this vacation took place, so I felt kind of guilty leaving her out. The universe has given me 12 chances to give this a shot, so I did.

Surprisingly, it turned out to be a warm reunion. We talked for about an hour mostly about marketing, culture, and the arts (interesting combo, right?), but what made an impact on me was the idea of filling the gap between our generation and the millennials in the corporate setting. I urged her to be open to this generation’s “radical” thinking. Combined with her traditionalist approach, I believe that the dissociation among their departments can be resolved.

It was an interesting conversation, but I didn’t want our reunion to be too serious, so I volunteered to show her around Festival Mall’s River Park. The place is refreshingly undisturbed by the busy highways and commercial establishments surrounding it. We both forgot about the serious topic we were discussing earlier because of all the greens and the still river below us. There were supposed to be gondolas riding down the river, but the park is under renovation. It was still quieting nonetheless.

One of the two amphitheaters in the park.
The bridge connects the walkway from the commercial side to the lush jogging and biking path across it.
The downside of this end of the park is that there are photobombing condos that ruin the setting.
The jogging/biking path.
The greenery opposite the concrete walls.
market basket
Among all the dining places here, Market Basket’s unaffected setup is my favorite.
Mini waterfalls under the bridge.
My new reading nook.

While it’s calming on this side of the park, the other side near the newly opened Landmark mall provides modern living with an open feel of an oasis. It’s called Water Park, although it’s the same water coming from the River Park. This side, however, is impressive in its combination of greens, water features, and stunning contemporary structural designs.

The bridge on this side is a stark contrast to the rustic design of the one in River Park.
The still water reflects the vastness of the sky above, creating  that feeling of openness that can be truly inspiring.
The new Landmark in Alabang.
Water flows freely in these steps by the open park.
The bridgeway connects Festival Mall to Landmark.




I can’t wait to see what this place looks like at night, especially once the construction is finished. I dread coming back here, though, once the Christmas shopping season comes full swing, so now should be the right time to give this new place a visit while it still gives the “openness” vibe. Welcome to the swaggering South!

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