Inspire

Christmas Everyday in the Philippines with the David Archuleta

Undeniably the Philippines celebrates Christmas season the longest. When the day hits September 1, the atmosphere especially in the urban areas transition – decorations, lights, shopping mall and online sales, and the playlist everywhere.

As the fan girl that I am and always will be, fellow David Archuleta fans, outside the US, would relate that it is a dream or bucket list to watch him perform for a Christmas concert. For years, I’ve set my eyes on the prize to save enough for a US trip (and of course, watch David there. Though there is that flicker of hope he might do a Christmas concert here in Manila, never did I imagine it would be sooner than I thought. An announcement came from Twitterverse and I got shookt! Not because he’s coming back. Planning a much awaited personal trip took me months to prep and save. His arrival zapped me of how to squeeze the Archie fangirl in me. Ang hirapppp!

The concert day is a struggle on its own, but the day and time of his arrival at the airport was a stragggeellll (struggle exaggerated) even. *sigh* The past few weeks has been hectic for me, both personal and work, so squeezing in extra things on my plate ain’t easy. To cut the story short, seems my stars aligned and the rarest of encounters seeing him again at the airport (different terminal) happened. Despite being tired from a 40-hr flight and had to keep up with only a few days here, he still managed to keep his cool and composure. Again, there’s a long story to this — My fan girl self was a bit sad to have not had a slight moment, a decent selfie perhaps with him. Unapologetic and real, who wouldn’t want to have a little time and special moment with the one they admire right? But my conscientious self tells me, seeing him face to face with that glance and smile is already priceless. Again, there’s a time for everything…properly, girl.

Here’s a snippet of his arrival, kudos to fellow fanfam @Jackryan (Tita Ditas) and Christer.

For the next few days, I had a good breakfast as he guested on morning shows like New Day on CNN Philippines and Unang Hirit on GMA7. There were just parts I can’t get over with.

David singing Crush on New Day and my ex-celebcrush (nag-iisa lang po sya dun…hahaha *UH-OH*) was singing along with him.

Not failing to mention, one of my bucket lists for him in visiting the Philippines is to eat our Christmas delis like puto bumbong and bibingka! Thanks, Unang Hirit for making that happen.

https://youtu.be/lw5VkL3kDLQ

And because I was sooooo caught off guard the media was just around the airport…so yes, a dose of myself was caught ON cam. Thanks, CNN Philippines.

He also guested in the noontime show, It’s Showtime (sad, no Eat Bulaga guesting *sniff*) and he also had a press conference with the other performers for the concert.

The concert was the main agenda that still gave the “struggle is real” moment. IT WAS A FRIGGING PAYDAY FRIDAY here in Manila which is synonymous to we-know-what — TRAFFIC JAM! I sang, I ate chips and I even slept till we finally made it in the venue. We didn’t make it for the meet and greet though. *sniff again*

Almost all of his concerts / performances here are really engaging and causing the fans to swarm thru the stage. This is one of those very few that kept us on our seats except for the last three songs he performed. I’m so sure my fellow fans who watched had their own highlights and thoughts. If you want to know what I had in mind, here’s mine…

His fellow performers have done well onstage. Not to brag but it shows how Filipinos are good singers. #sorrynotsorry Just want to emphasize on Mikee Misalucha’s voice cause I’m feeling more vibe with the kind of genre she does. I’m having a sense of Alessia Cara of sorts from her songs to her voice. We weren’t able to catch JBK perform (late nga di ba? Lol), but from their encore with David they’re good and so is Anton Antenorcruz. The latter’s got the chops of a balladeer like Jed Madela.

And of course, there’s David…

The petmalu that he is and will always be, mannn, grooves and sings on point. That’s a no brainer. The energy is really there to make sure we would all have a good time. I’m sure some won’t agree with me, but there were very teeny tiny instances the tiresome feels can be sensed. It must be the scheds or the time zone, still he managed to make it an awesome Christmas concert for us. Singing the classics and his two new songs channeled us for the occasion. “Winter in the Air”, “O Holy Night” gave me the goosies while “The First Noel” drew me into tears.

https://youtu.be/Hb-nTQxZ6Jw

Then, he showed his witty side with the “Have A Holly Jollibee (Jolly) Christmas” that he really had to squeeze the top fastfood chain in the Philippines in the song. Dear Jollibee, hope you’d consider that endorsement! Of course, the songs that etched in his fans’ hearts — the first single, “Crush” and one of my fave songs from high school days, “Forevermore”.

https://youtu.be/wUxdmOL4Puc

The best part of all of this is the fact he never fails to give inspiration to us fans by helping others. Taking this case, he came here to help for Mabuhay Deseret Foundation and celebrate for their 30th anniversary thru a benefit concert. It not only makes you enough to just see, but you also have to act. It validates you that you admired the person that could influence you to become a better person.

No pretensions, we (as his fans) get all giddy when he returns here. It rattles our socmeds and chat inboxes. However, catching up with this ninja kid has been evolving on our end too. Reality bites, the fans have grown in terms of their personal lives and priorities. Those who keep up almost every day on his whereabouts before are the folks who are now keeping up to work on their lives — for families, for work, for church even. One thing certain, the fans never let go of that Archie-love.

Going a little emo mode, I will be brutally honest. Being a fangirl ain’t easy. There’s the keeping up with your idol’s whereabouts and updates. Watching concerts here are wallet slashing. When you don’t have connections (especially here in the Philippines), there is a very slim chance of having that direct engagement with your idol. You’ve also got to ensure that being a fangirl doesn’t compromise your daily roles. There’s a huge chunk of your life that has to live and survive. Above all, you’ve got to comprehend that not everybody would understand your craziness and all that’s in it. There are even some who would go stoked with their idol, on their own.

This year marks my 10th year of being an Archie fangirl, taking back to American Idol days. The best part of this journey is that as my life evolved, so did my fangirl side. It had shares of ups and downs but I know I didn’t go thru it alone. I had the company of folks thru Archuleta Philippines, maybe small in numbers, that I was able to build good bonds with. Not only did we click on our love and support for our idol, but eventually the group became movie / food / travel / coffee shop buddies and friends. Moreover, I even had extended fanfam outside this 7107-island nation. I had the opportunity to put faces with my online pals (across Singapore, Malaysia and Hongkong…more soon I hope) and spend time with them, even for a cup of coffee.

 

Having said that, I’m using this medium to express my appreciation and love for the people who’ve been supporting this guy right here, thru thick and thin. To my AP fanfam, thanks and make the most out of the inspiration you’ve got from David for God and the community. To me, this is part of the whole, real me.

So, is Christmas everyday achievable? If you have the mindset that good things come in small packages and blessings, you know the answer to that question…

 

Chill…no real life David harmed, just a standee 🤣

 

May your fangirl be meaningful and inspiring,

Calai

 

 

credits:

vids

(arrival, CNN, Unang Hirit) – c/o Tita Ditas via YouTube (jr4DA2016 plus)

(Winter in the Air) – my You Tube account (calai reyes)

For more photo and vid archives and news / updates, check on Archuleta Philippines Facebook Page.

Author

calaithewriter@gmail.com

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