Grateful Dad: #20.23: Palanca Street in Makati

November 17, 2023

A recent trip to Palanca Street in Makati City brought back a lot of happy memories that made me smile as I looked back to them fondly.

A few months ago, Mommy Khris and I visited Makati City to meet some of her close friends. One of them celebrated their birthday a few days before our meet-up. We had a happy and hearty lunch at Olive Garden, an Italian Restaurant, at Glorietta, and enjoyed its delicious offerings of unlimited soup, salad, and bread paired with hefty servings of pasta. It was an indulgent lunch punctuated by jovial waves of laughter that can only emanate from people who genuinely appreciate each other’s presence.

Grateful Dad: Palanca Street in Makati

Grateful Dad: #20.23: Palanca Street in Makati

After eating, we were not yet done with our stories so we thought of continuing the conversation over coffee and dessert. That being said, we walked to the nearby streets looking for a café where we could spend the rest of the afternoon. 

Our feet eventually led us to Palanca Street, possibly one of the most ubiquitous sections of the Central Business District because it was home to several affordable and popular food stalls, restaurants, coffee and milk tea shops, and at some point, joints where one could relax while having a bottle of two or beer.

While we were walking along Palanca Street, some happy memories suddenly came rushing into my head. I always thought that Makati City had that old-school vibe despite being home to many big businesses and corporate centers. 

When I was still working in Makati City around the year 2011, Palanca Street was a particular favorite on Friday nights after work. More than a place to relax, it was a place where I found solace from a week of fighting meaningless battles in my old work. It was there that I began to dream of leaving my old job to start a new life elsewhere. Those were fond memories and it felt great to be reminded of those days.

Palanca Street, Makati City

I never really realized that dream but the whole process of planning for it (the great escape) and not being successful at it opened my eyes to a lot of truths and taught me many valuable lessons. On many occasions, the life that we thought would be ideal for us will turn out to be the opposite. However, it doesn’t mean that you are defeated.

In fact, it’s the universe’s way of telling you that you are not meant for that path. On the other hand, you are meant to be somewhere else because you have a mission to fulfill. In my case, it was being able to help my parents, especially my mother who became ill during that time. Nevertheless, the world had other plans for me and I was led to another road which, I later realized, was what I was intended to take.

Anyway, when we were finally able to find a café where we could stay for a little while, it dawned upon me that it was the location of the bar that my friends and I used to frequent. It looked very different; the interiors were modern and bright, definitely made for the much younger crowd who were occupying the majority of the space in the café.

When our orders of coffee and pastries arrived, I couldn’t help but smile to myself that I was once young and in that exact place, the same yet still worlds apart, holding a bottle of beer and planning to do some crazy stuff. Oh well, we were all young once.

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