My mom remains to be sweet and thoughtful after all these years – even if we’re oceans apart and it’s been forever since we were last together. For example, she sends me links to entertaining chismis sites or cool new blogs I should check out myself or maybe even feature in the paper. She e-mails me pics of deer, squirrels, wild birds and even snakes from her backyard. She sends me songs she thinks I’d find catchy. She uses these emoticons and all these weird smileys that involve more than just the colon and the parentheses. And of course, she still says I love you every time.

Last week, my mother informed me that her other half Greg would be dropping by the country soon for a stopover and that he’d be handing me some stuff. I totally forgot about it and realized one day that Greg was already in the country for his one day stay, waiting for me at a hotel. I found myself dashing off to Makati right after work.

As usual, it was great to see the person who’s making my mom happy and exchanging stories with him. I truly want to get to know him more and when I visit them in the US I know we’ll be able to do this.

Greg and I spent a little over an hour chitchatting. I wish we could have spent some more time together, perhaps had dinner, but he needed to rest and adjust his body clock while I needed to beat the rush hour.

When I got home I finally got to open the huge gray Tupperware plastic box that my mom sent us. (What can I say, my mom’s version of the balikbayans box is just so sosyal.) It was overflowing with goodies – folded and stuffed to fit in Ziploc bags for protection, plus with labels.

My mother apologized earlier for the contents, explaining that she didn’t have the budget and that the opportunity to send stuff over was unexpected so she didn’t have a lot of time to prepare for it. I told her I understand – and that I forgive her since she always has next time to make up for it.

I love the alarm clock that she sent me. It wakes you up with funny, witty lines from familiar voices such as that Indian guy from the Simpsons. I also love the hair product, pocket PC and magazines (OMG the latest ish of Real Simple!) she sent me, among other things.

Of course, she didn’t forget about everyone else, especially the kids, who went nuts over their unexpected ubong.

Thanks ma, from all of us back here. Hope you enjoyed the drugs and the abanico fans I sent you. LOLers. Am I not fabulous?