I just can believe how expensive everything is nowadays. I was cleaning my desk a couple of days ago and stumbled upon an old Shell receipt with the price per liter of their then flagship fuel Velocity was Php 16 per liter. Php 16!!! Those were the times when me and my college barkada (with me as the perpetual pilot) would be able to go to SM Megamall and back to UP in within our 3-hour break to grab a movie. And it was indeed cheaper to bring a car than pay for fare for 5 people.

I queued up for gas and the price for Shell’s flagship V-Power is at Php 58+. My Php 1000, which was supposed to last me for the rest of the month, filled my tank with only 17 liters. Which, given the mileage I get from my car would allow me to travel 145 kms. 8-10 home to UP and back. Even minimizing the number of trips I have to make in a week failed to cut down on my transportation expenses. I still have to go to UP since I’m already in the process of writing my thesis proposal. And just the fact that making the trip costs a lot sucks balls.

This leads me to ponder what the heck am I going to do with my car. Until now, I haven’t gotten around having it diagnosed for that slight hard starting problem. I mean, even the dealership crapped out on that one. And most of the reputable shops who claim that they can do it, are really out of the way. Thus, I’m not even risking taking it to Antipolo to visit Risha during the weekends, lest I risk having it conk out on me while negotiating those steep Rizal mountain roads.

If I decide to have the engine swapped, it would exhaust one of my bank accounts for (Php65K). Not to mention that the engine what will be swapped will be a larger 2.0L engine meaning that it will guzzle more gas – one thing that you don’t want these days. Or, I could just sell the car at a go-for-broke price and lose Php 65k worth of repairs I’ve already done on my car. Or I could just buy an old-school ride (like a box-type Mitsu Lancer or a Toyota Starlet) for the same price (though that would mean I’d have 2 cars to worry about). Gain or loss, what the f*ck. Why can’t we just have safe bike lanes along Commonwealth Avenue at that. Damnit.

Quite honestly, I do think that I am building a very bad impression on Risha’s parents just by not being able to visit her. I mean, they’re great people but you can’t just shake paranoia off.

Oh, and a side note, while driving one morning along Commonwealth Avenue, I spied a Hummer H3 with an 8 plate on it. Guess who’s paying for gas on that thing. Piff…


One of those obligatory breaks I had to take from all of my work is a day with Risha. Yesterday, we decided to catch up on all of the movies that we failed to see. I work a flexible schedule but she works an 8-5. As for weekends, she has review classes for the board exam in the evening leaving us a few hours of Saturday to meet up.

Yesterday was one of those Saturdays. Since her review school was along the LRT route, we opted to go to Gateway for our movie date. Yes, reserved seats are a bitch costing around Php 20-40 more than your average cinema. We wanted to watch Indiana Jones too but since that Marvel movie was already out, we decided to watch Hulk instead. (For those of you expecting something bad-ass for Hulk, let me just say that you shouldn’t gauge it based on Iron Man, ’cause Iron Man was pretty f*cking great.) If she hadn’t had that review class, we could have watched Indy Jones as well and probably have watched that Air Supply concert for a nightcap. Total damage for four tickets, Php 600+.

Oh and there’s the lunch, which if not in a fast-food chain would blow a Php 500+ hole in your wallet for a lunch for two. Not that I’m complaining since we get to do it once every two weeks if lucky with our schedules. But if you have to be really shrewd about finances, the fact that you have to spend more than Php 1500 (that would be including my gas money for the trip, if you factor in her trip from her home, add Php 500 to that), is preposterous. And we’re not even going all out on spending in our dates at that.

If you’re going to rationalize it, Php 1000 isn’t worth much these days. I just miss those days back in college when you can get a movie and a meal for Php 120 per person. I mean Php 1000, is about 1/8 of a minimum wag earner’s net pay, making our spending bracket very bourgeois.

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