The theme of its pearl anniversary is “30 years of passion and advocacy”, interpreted as its strong desire for climbing mountains and the outdoors and its support to the causes for the environment, group camaraderie and the uplift of the medical conditions of the marginalized in remote areas accessible only by mountaineers. The anniversary program as in the previous years provides windows for members and alumnus to give testimonies on what the club meant to them. Witnessed by about 50 guests at the Rothman Hotel along Adriatico st. in Malate, young female applicants and members described the fun in getting together and climbing with the club. More senior member Paul Salvacion recounted the learnings and the discipline imparted by the climbs and the club and how it helped build confidence and competency facing the real working world.
Founding members from the College of Architecture shared with the incumbent batch the early years building the club starting with a memorable wall in the San Marcelino st. as the claimed private space of MESAU. Started by a group of fun-loving, street smart students 30 years ago, Demi Abarguez and Jimmy Memjie recalled their 1st climbs which was the 1st time they gained acquaintance with each other, how they were perceived as a noisy, rowdy group by the more established clubs as UPM, PALMC, USTMC which eventually allied with them, how they learned the ropes of climbing by mere climbing and not by the rigidness of training and knowledge by reading. During their time when they were eventually recognized by the school, a favorite priest would support their climbs by providing financial subsidy and recognition as the club carried the school name. The tradition of climbing Pulag after Christmas started in the early 80’s and was carried on by the succeeding batches. Disclosed too were the close encounter with the military in Pulag when they were mistaken as rebels threatening their lives with armalites poked at their faces. Food related anecdotes were brought to the forum by former presidents such as the “abodo” spilling incident of their packed lunch to a Bacolod bound co-passenger in barong tagalong and the spaghetti meant as a group food in Tupperware that rolled down in the soil and eventually eaten as it nothing happened. Like typical post climbing stories, chronicled too were the make shift equipment for instance framed back packs and casual outfits like maong and how they fared compared to the highly technical gears of this generation.
Past presidents such as Bart Bartolome, Rayan Reyes, Jon Linao, Jun De Vera, Queen Roma Pegarido, Jon Anista were recognized by the club for their contribution in keeping the club alive up to this day. Highlight of gatherings as in other mountaineering clubs gathering was the slide showing prepared by the organizing committee of MESAU in 2012 on how MESAU demonstrated it passion for climbing and advocacy. MESAU will undoubtedly cross its Golden (50th) Anniversary in December 2032 because what it does is consistent with the core values of the school inculcated to its students, “Adamson University-Keeping the Legacy of Hope and Service Alive."
|A guest of MESAU with Past President Jon Linao. Foto by Jun de Vera|
An Adamsonian Prayer
Dear Lord, Teach me the things that are important: To be generous with Your gifts, Compassionate to those who have less, Just in the face of unfair circumstances, True when the world's values contradict my own, Gracious when things don't go my way, And magnanimous when they do. May nothing else matter Except Faith in Your goodness, my neighbor's, and mine, Hope that things can get better, And Charity that always set things right. May Your special Love for the Poor, The mark of my uniquely Vincentian education, Be the work I excel in, The standard I constantly refer to, And my courage when I meet You someday. With Mary, our Mother, and St. Vincent de Paul, Amen
Fotos courtesy of Jun de Vera and Jon Linao
Meeting MESAU in Pinatubo
May 9, 1999 in Weekend Fun
You’ve heard about them. You must have encountered them in your regular weekend climb or in a jeepney ride from Maculot, Majayjay or Siniloan.
In the campsite, you will most likely spot them in a circle passing clear distilled looking liquid in a small glass. They stay in this position the minute they reach the flat land until early dawn or they’re down whichever comes first.
They say this socializing is what sets MESAU from other groups in their campus, other camps and in the federation. To them this is the tradition which is a non negotiable pre-requisite to membership for 15 years.
In Pinabuto Trek they listed 22 participants. 7 from the alumni with their Xs present. Call them the 3R’s: Richard, Ronald and Raymond. 8 from the incumbents led by their perpetual student and another X Jon. Then the missing 7.
You know the novice from the hard cores-the alumni in their daypacks, the students in their full packs. Again, a tradition they say.
What really are they? Not very different from the 67 other climbers. They take their tasks seriously. See to the delivery of the basics as the jeepney rides, guides, trails, campsite and the return pick-ups. But the difference is, they all show up in the socials and stay.
So when Viper of PNB put in his formal suit and long pants to signal the start of That’s Entertainment, it was socials to the max. PAL MC had an unexplainable presence that night: Aldo Velasco heckling with guest TJ, Joey Verzo explaining his new civil status, Dom Goduco recalling his college days, Jojoy Cadungog contemplating his retirement days, Bond Abad restaging his sacristan days, Jojo Ramos, Juno Moncada with Danny Moncada and Larry Honoridez simply wondering what’s going on, Barry Barcelo with Jun Timbol just enjoying and Chito quietly behaving. The place changed overnight. Mount Pinatubo turned to Barangay Ginebra.
Socials had the formula to be a hit:
· There was quorum. After the group dinner and small socials, everyone just gravitated to the big circle to await what’s bound to happen.
· Guests were open. Everyone gamely introduced himself or herself, associated with PAL, MESAU, PNB, Globe Telecoms, Loyola, Dennis, Omar, Jessie, Jenny, Jaja, Val, Chio, Joel, Elmer, Popoy, Regie, and Ronald. Lady trekkers gamely put in a romantic angle for the night.
· There’s entertainment: Intros by Bong of PNB, song and dance by Viper and Henry, magic by Rolly, rated x night show of Martin Chambers, CD music by TJ and inspirational messages from the AETA guides.
· Important to MESAU and to the others, stainless in various forms and sizes.
As they was no imminent difficulty and danger the next day, socials went on and on up to early morning until no MESAU was left standing. The loud laughter started to fire at 8 PM, reached its peak towards 11 and slowly faded out before 3 AM.
Pinatubo was an exploration. The morning after, the mission was done. We explored Pinatubo, met new acquaintances: faces now have names, names match with faces, set new socializing and drinking levels and understood the “E” in MESAU’s initials, the Exploration Society.
Soon, on some other time, in some other place, we hope to explore too Globe Telecoms beyond Regie and Martin, PNB beyond Rolly and Viper, MESAU beyond Ronald and Richard, PALMC beyond Chito, Jojoy and the rest, Loyola beyond Jenny and Bosch beyond spark plugs.