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I am a Bicolano by birth and choice. By any standards, I am a slow runner but I like it that way. I look at running as a healthy and exciting way to make a difference. Together with my fellow runners from our family, school, office and the community, we use running to give back..

January 3, 2014

REUNION RUN: Ateneo2Ateneo2Ateneo

Emoticon"It’s hard to lie about your age once you've told someone you've just been to your 50th high school reunion." -  Mused Chicago-based journalist and nationally syndicated writer Robert Koehler in a Huffington Post article (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-koehler/reflections-on-a-high-sch_b_3791583.html).   

My high school batch is not yet in our golden moment but at 30, we sure are nearing it steadily and for some, creakingly painful.  But we are optimistic, some even stubborn, and we continue to challenge father time. It may take many forms and for a dirty dozen among us 83neans, the mode of challenge is running.     

Part of our celebrations for the 30th Batch Reunion of the Ateneo de Naga High School Class of 1983 last December 29 was a 14-km fun run that took us from the university campus in downtown Naga to the high school campus in Pacol and back to the university. A fun run with no registration, no race bibs and no official singlets. No matter as it had a lot of fun running buddies. And a ton of endorphins.

It was actually an optional activity as only a dozen or so of our batchmates are passionate about running. I kind of expected less than a handful would  answer the bell on that early Saturday morning as the night before, there was drunken revelry among the running 83neans and their  classmates. But come 5:30 am, in front of the iconic Four Pillars, 9 batchmates  assembled to run:  Allen Tolledo, Bob Castilla, Ed Balcueva, Ernie Badong, Ruben "Fards" Fajardo, Noel "Ghibz" Guevara , Ron Hemady,  Ric Lozano and the Bicolano Penguin. On hand to provide support in his bike was our classmate Jun "Erfs" Erfe together with his kid John Michael who is a 3rd year student at the Ateneo de Naga High School. And the number grew bigger as we were joined by Ron's nephew Mike Hemady; Allen's gym friends She Desaliza, Belle Romualdo, Kevin Moral and Alex Tresvalles; and Ric's running buddies Joji Asis and Gary Castillo. And the latter brought along his college-age son Janjo.

83nean runners of the Reunion Run
Running buddies supporting the 83neans
Bike escorts: Jun Erfe and son John Michael 

In total, there were 17 runners who started the Reunion Run. Thank you to all that communed with us on this run. You guys bring the fun in the run.  It was an enjoyable experience as the photos would show:

Indian run

Reaching the Ateneo de Naga High School campus in Pacol

Group photo at the high school campus

In pairs with Bob the sweeper

Escorts in action

Castillo father and son

Endorphin – rich Fards boosting the run

Ric and Ghibz taking the lead on the way back

Janjo showing good form

Proud half marathon finishers.What is next?

All smile Ernie. Where is the Hoka?

Finishing together – She and Kevin

Belle and She having a photo with  Bob while Allen doing a "Chris Bosh"
At the end of the run, which brought us back to the Four Pillars, gatorade hydration was provide by another classmate Ronel Gascon. There was a delicious merienda waiting for us courtesy of  Jun  Erfe and  wife.    

Pansit bihon and...
The Reunion Run is shaping up to be a family affair  which lead Fards to suggest that next year, we should be  inviting our children to join us in the run as what Jun and Gary have done.

83nean finishers getting wacky

Group shot of all the finishers
This is a good idea and  I could not help but smile. Next year there  will be  another reunion run and it will be bigger as we will be inviting our kids along. Great bonding opportunity. No way for this run to go but younger. And better...Emoticon


For more photos of the reunion run and other reunion activities of Batch 1983 last December 29, kindly visit this link –https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.776669835683743&type=1.   

Thank you to Karl Llorin and  Gui Deblois of the Ateneo de Naga alumni affairs office for the pictures and the warm hospitality.    


  1. BP, 'hope this will be a yearly Reunion Run with our batchmates nd running comrades until our 50th alumni reunion :D

  2. Hi Allen, thank you for your enthusiasm. Running till our 50th reunion is pretty ambitious but possible. One way to sustain this is to engage our kids to join us, per the suggestion of Fards.