An Encounter With Ex Addict Turned Mental Health Advocate

Like most transient, they were exhausted going through NAIA’s tight security in Manila, Philippines. Nonetheless, they noted it was all worth setting foot in this Filipino city. They were glad airport’s bus accommodated a ride that would take them to Holiday Inn Makati.
Upon registering in hotel’s reception, they were issued an envelope that would contain a check or gift voucher amounting huge sum and that the concierge lady assured them that would they need anything just give them a ring. Their entire stay is pre-paid so they literally need not worry about having all services they wanted to avail. The concierge lady told them they are perfect choice to be the brand Ambassador/Ambassadress of such luxurious brand.

“We just got lucky.” Said the Ambassadress intimidated that she rang the bell summoning the trolley for their luggage. The concierge lady couldn’t hide feeling pissed but manage to smile handing them each the card for an access to their suite . They walked across the lobby restraining to laugh loud. In tow, was the bell man laughing with them saying they’re the first to upset the lady and he congratulated them in behalf of all their guests who didn’t have time to waste on her. She didn’t do anything bad except she’s giving too much compliment to the point it’s cloyingly sweet but you want to run from it.

“She then felt above those diplomats whom she had won an argument. I had a row with her and i almost lost my job.” said the bell man.
“Actually, i did that in revenge to the lady in hotel back home in Singapore who made phone calls that we end up hanging on all fours out of the building itself.” said the Ambassadress laughing hilariously with them.
The brand Ambassador was glad she was taking all these mess evenly as she did with fine things in life.

“The Asian definition of luxury, sophistication that we all relish. What else can we ask for honey?” she said dancing on tip toe and shuffled like a ballerina across the lobby. she slipped intending to fall so he would catch her. The concierge lady stared in disbelief. He carried her like a newly wed would from the lift to their suite’s entrance. She swiped her card to an electronic device mounted on their door and it slid open to a luxurious suite. She walked across the gleaming floor and pushed the button on the window. Drapes parted on both sides offering a panoramic view of Ortigas Skyline and Bonifacio Global City skyline dazzling against the sunlight.
“O, i can’t wait to start working. Be part of this great city and discover its secrets. Isn’t it wonderful? Up here to down there is like listening to thousand and one stories told at once.” she said whose eyes filled with awe while she keeps scanning for a familiar skyscraper.

“Be careful though for it’s like wilderness. Up here, someone is flying high looking for a prey. Down there are dangerous pits where snakes and beasts roam. Everyone is aiming to be on top of the food chain devouring those on the lowest echelon.” he said who stayed beside her and pushed another button which parted another drapes. ” It seemed peaceful but a battle is really going on that we will be part of. I’m very lucky because i have you with those gymnastics skills. It is widely known and that will scare addicts away.” he said diving to a springy mattress and bounced back standing on the floor imitating her landing. She grinned and flattered at the outright compliment.

“But tell me, what’s the perfume got to do with anti drug use campaign? I mean, i didn’t sign up for that. I’m all here for the glamour the perfume represents. Why can’t they leave it to their government to do the campaigning?”


“I think it’s the company’s way of giving back to the community or at least make some public awareness. But i don’t mind it really. I have my own battle which we will together fight. Just like you, I’m all here for the smile.” he said waving and smiling to imaginary crowd of fans.

“And I’m very lucky to have you armed with power to ward off evil, otherwise I’ll end up one of those greasy people and their cohorts.” she said referring to deranged people that weren’t able to have proper mental health care. For some reason, the cause that they were advocating fights back against them. In one country, they were the face of the said campaign that gone as mad as the situation. In essence, their posters become an effigy for people who opposed to their causes. She sigh as she collected their luggage and was putting everything in place eager to stay for long.
“Poor fellow, most of them are under the curse of poverty, anointed by evil. Unfortunately, they are so frail falling prey to evil drug so easy and later become an army. Unlike us, we are strong even though evil’s white ash  
(cocaine) is within our reach. I know soon we’ll get rid of it and we are to rescue them.” She said recalling how the concierge lady sneered referring to them as the perfect Ambassador for drugs for they were both a confessed addict. They both used to defend their drug use as more of medical than of recreation citing their maddening lifestyle as a rising star but they stopped defending it for it does more harm than good.
“Is that why you didn’t fight back Bjorn last Paris Fashion Week despite your fighting skills? Is that why you make friends with those drag queens and hookers in Thailand who almost killed you?” He asked with vague expression on his face.

“Yes, because breaking their bones will not change anything, it’s not winning over our real cause but losing. she said looking for her purse on compartments of the luggage. ” You might be wondering and think I’m on their side because i didn’t call for your help or why i didn’t resort to violence. It’s because it won’t work on them and to us all as a community; even though they turned fully white ash laden, we shouldn’t resort to violence or kill them. An addict like us should have a fair chance in life. Look at us. By the way, that device of yours, the sight of it made some people wary. Although it doesn’t really measure the baliw (Addict, madness, intoxicated) level of the suspected user; it drives them away and thus keeping me safe. Let’s make it clear, it doesn’t count as a real drug test but it’s known among addicts to be cause of concern, that’s the time your device works, that just the sight of it made them flinch.
“How can you possibly knew that?” Tell me, you’re still in contact with the other side of yourself, aren’t you?” he asked who was not sure how to bring up the issue of taking sides.

“You can say dark side. Yes, past tense. I was a freak fooling those addicts of fake device brandishing it on them back at the beach in Cali. In fact, i was the one who’s afraid of your device giving you a leather sheath thick enough to be kept out of my sight. The stigma it created on me is sometimes unbearable.” she said looking at him who was ambiguous at the disclosure. “Well, you can get your device and brandish it to me just to prove I’m as sane or clean as you are, if not the sanest. And believe me, whether you like it or not you still have that dark side within you. Before we could help them out of evil drugs, we need to get out of it fully first and it starts by working for our brand and the campaign, not to mention we’re running out of resources. ” she said counting few bills left on her purse. “Got to work for the first pay check.” she said composing herself and stormed to the closet to find every clothes they need provided by sponsors.
She took beige Dolce & Gabbana suit and slack pants off the rack, put it on and perfectly fitted her.

“I’m sorry, first time of everything terrifies me, See you later.” she said running toward the door and waved him goodbye. She turned as the door slid close behind and caught glimpsed of him with sadness in his eyes. She pushed the intercom outside. “Don’t worry, I can kick their ass and you got a device.” she said waiting for a response. The door slid open and without a word he rushed out kissing her lips and she kissed back.
“Good luck.” he said letting go of her as the lift open.

Disclaimer: This journal chronicle events from my past career describing activities on and off salesman’s duties. All events described herein actually happened irrespective of the order the blog was posted. Any resemblance to persons living or dead should be plainly apparent to them and those who know them and that the author is not responsible for any assumptions that may arise; to construe from the fact presented is discouraged as the author is still trying to make sense of it. You may do so at your own risk.

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