I’m at Route 196 way too often for the mere reason that it’s about a stone’s throw away from our house and the route is simple enough. Aside from that, I happen to like that bar. It’s quiet and it has open-air seating that allow us to talk to each other in peace when the music inside is too loud, or breathe better when the air inside is too stuffy with smoke. I wanted to say “breathe fresh air” but this is Manila, there is no such thing as fresh air, so scratch that.

We really weren’t rushing out of the house because I didn’t think Flush and the Toilets was playing first. As it happened, we got in exactly 1 minute after they were done playing. That was disappointing. I was looking forward to watching and listening to Amrei sing 80s songs again.

Amrei on vocals, Roma on bass, Papa John on lead, Che on drums

But it was refreshing to see Dan again. I love seeing Dan. Now that is a breathe of fresh air. That guy. Always.

Dan Geromo of The Discoball, Billy Gaga and um, The Wonder Boarders

The Ronnies was playing when these photos were taken.

The Ronnies

Amrei, Che, Steph and Angku

Ya, that’s me showing off my 32-piece set of teeth.

I can’t count how many times I’ve seen Kaze but I remember the first time I saw them perform. It was at Top Junk’s anniversary gig and “Kapit Mahal” music video launch last September. (I had blogs about it but well, they’re missing. Gone in the database haywire). I even have a video of them here and here. And I distinctly remember not liking them – until I saw them perform with a violin. I’m biased like that. I like any band with a violin in it. It’s just mesmerizing. I did play the violin at one point in my life… and on this night, I almost wished I still did.

The last band to play, of course, was Top Junk.

That was one fun night! People were dancing. That made me wonder if there’ll ever be that kind of dancing in Wharf. I’ve observed Naguenos to be quite self-conscious. Even found myself singing along to Hung Over Trippin and wondering even more, “I know the lyrics?!”

Though Amrei left early and I didn’t notice John and his girlfriend, or even Che leave, we stayed late into the morning, way later than we intended, just because my friend Bibs was there with us. We didn’t make it to The Smiths night with Your Imaginary Friends so we thought we’d better make it then.

While the two of us were deep in on-the-verge-of-drunkenness (yeah that would be just me) conversation, H was doing some “integration”. That was just funny, seeing Dan, the Romawacs and Top Junk with H, sitting around a garden table, talking about biking and running and trails.

Here’s proof:

We all left at about 3:30(!) and were of course, the last ones to go. Really, we were the last, last, last ones to go. Fun night though. I wish the music lasted all night…

*Thanks Coy for playing photographer all the time. In fairness, ang sipag mo ha!