THRILLMAKER: Blind item: The news on love

Published February 13, 2022, 11:51 AM

by Joee Guilas

‘Love comes from the most unexpected places’

Singer Jose Feliciano once sang in his 1976 hit album Sweet Soul Music “love comes from the most unexpected places.” So true, especially in the case of this well-respected news anchor friend of mine who recently found THE ONE that he has long been searching for in the most unlikely of locations: his least favorite restaurant in Resorts World Manila.

Of course, I personally know every detail of this beautiful love story as I was there to witness how it all began.

It was nearing the Christmas season and I got a call from this friend from another network asking if RWM will have a yearend countdown concert just like we’ve always had every year. I said “yeah, there’s gonna be one.”

Thrilled by my confirmation and excited to finally be out of the house after months of staying indoors and doing his “newscast from home,” he immediately agreed to a meet up in order for him to pick up the complimentary ticket for the show. The date and time of our lunch meeting was set with its location all up to me, being the host.

The appointed time finally came and I was at the plaza of the Newport Mall early, since the first meeting I had that day ended ahead of schedule. So while waiting for Mr. Broadcaster (let’s call my friend that) to make an appearance, I settled myself in my favorite resto in the area to chill for a bit and yeah, get some salad (I was unusually hungry that day, having skipped breakfast!).

Some minutes later, I got a text from Mr. Beoadcaster asking where exactly our meeting’s going to be held. After texting back the name of the restaurant, what I got next was an immediate call from my VIP guest. Before I could even say, hello, my friend blurted out: “Bakit ka nandyan? Ayoko dyan! Wala akong paboritong pagkain dyan.” (Why are you there? I don’t like that place. I don’t like any of their food offerings!) Confident that we’ll never run out of restaurant options where I was, I calmly said: “No problem. Just come here and I’ll just finish my salad so we can go somewhere else.”

A few minutes more and my expected lunch mate finally arrived. His starting line was: “Hindi ka pa rin tapos? Halika na. Alis na tayo dito!” (You’re not done yet? C’mon, let’s go!) To which I jokingly replied: “Wait. I’ll just pay for this. Ang sungit naman! Yan ang napapala ng loveless.” This friend of mine and I are really close. I’ve always been there for him every time his past relationships turned sour. He and his last boyfriend broke up about five years ago. Immediately after taking my last bite, I gestured the waiter to hand me the check. I asked my friend, “are you sure you don’t want anything from here?” Rolling his eyes in disgust, he shook his head.

The waiter finally got to our table. He’s probably in his early twenties, tall, on the moreno side and yes, decent looking. Handing me the check, he very politely said: “Sir, here’s your check.”

From totally out of nowhere, Mr. Broadcaster asked the waiter: “Excuse me, can you hand me the menu, please.” Shocked, I could only look at my friend in the eye, totally puzzled. He just said: “He’s cute.”

I witnessed how Mr. Broadcaster charmed his way to making the waiter give him his number. I have been updated—constantly—on how things have progressed between the two since that initial meeting. I wonder if my friend still hates the restaurant where I decided to meet with him on that November day. The waiter turned out to be a good guy, after all. He’s got no sob stories, no unnecessary demands from my friend and has so far been very kind, gentle and understanding to my good pal. It’s been three months since their first meeting, and they have officially become a couple.

I guess this story’s lesson is pretty clear: to those who are close to giving up on love, don’t. You’ll never know just who you’ll find in the least expected time and place.