Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Muy Bonita Ciudad de Zamboanga

Reading the newspapers and watching the television newscasts on the armed hostilities in Zamboanga City saddens me

And why wouldn't I feel bad about it?

You see, I was once assigned in Zamboanga City when I was a medical representative connected with SmithKline Beecham (before its merger with Glaxo Wellcome)

That brief two year interlude in the City of Flowers would always be one of the best highlights of my younger years

It all started when I was summoned by my boss one bright sunny day in September 1997. I was told of an incident involving my counterpart. In other words, I was to be banished to faraway Mindanao because I wasn't doing my job while I was assigned in Cebu City. Instead of doctor calls and pharmacy visits, I was so engrossed with my nightlife

Perhaps, the change of scenery and the slower & quieter pace in my new territory would do wonders for my professional and personal life

Upon setting foot in Zamboanga City, My worst fears simply vanished. All the speculations and the silly innuendos proved to be unfounded.

My territory coverage included Zamboanga City and the exciting islands of Basilan, Sulu and Tawi- tawi
Western Mindanao Medical Center
Contrary to popular belief, Zamboanga City is a wonderful city and its people are are so friendly .

The doctors in particular were very accommodating. I made new friends as well. I had a better grasp of my job, my attitude improved.

I started Year 1998 with a big bang!  With my renewed optimism and enthusiastic approach towards work, I began hitting my sales quota and in fact, by March 1998, I   topped the three- month nationwide Rulid- Relifex Sales Blitz Contest 

Who can ever forget the warmth and the smiles of the Zamboangenos?

I stayed at the Atilano Compound where I was able to forge lifelong friendships with fellow medical representatives. 

Weekend Breaks at Scenic Pasonangka 

Memorable nightlife at Garden Orchid Hotel and barhopping along the city's entertainment district  

 The best food ever especially from Alavar’s! Curacha with Alavar’s Sauce. It’s Seafood Galore

Movies at Mindpro Mall and huge bargains at the Barter Markets

spicy Maggi Noodles! 

Outings at Sta. Fe Beach

Zamboanga City also had its own panoramic promenade by the sea named RT Lim Boulevard 

The best counterpart too Jason Geronimo and his lovely wife Claudette

But nothing can beat those days spent at Atilano Compound with Eduard, Judy, Venus, Suzette, Raquel, Edgar Allan, Dennis, Noynoy, Tom, Mardy, Jepoy, Dino, Tabs, Dave, Bong, Randy, Nash

Of course, there were the occasional spats, heated arguments and the cold- shoulder treatment but which family doesn't encounter any of these?

By the time I was to leave for my home province Bohol as my new assignment, a bout of depression suddenly hit me when realized that perhaps it was to be the last time for me to see Zamboanga City

I was so touched when I arrived at the Zamboanga airport for most of my friends and my housemates were all there waiting for me to bid them adieu

Saying goodbye at the airport
A few minutes before boarding time, I couldn't help but burst into tears at a corner in the airport

Amidst the good- natured ribbing, wishes of good luck and a safe journey and reminders not to forget them and in between the hugs and kisses, there was the pervading air of melancholy

I had to extricate myself from them and reluctantly as I walked towards the terminal gates, tears fell again (Thank God for sunglasses)

Adios Zamboanga! Till We Meet Again

Extra Special Blog Feature

Part 1: The Tragic Story of Amparo Munoz

  no fairy tale ending SPAIN CONQUERED THE PHILIPPINES AGAIN. Whenever discussions and debates center on who is considered as the m...