"Buy me a pasalubong!" I told my friend, Derek.
He smiled and pretended not to hear me.
"C'mon! It's not that hard to find what I want anyway." I said.
"Alright. Fine. What do you want?" he asked
"A starfish!" I answered with a chuckle.
A few weeks ago, Derek together with his parents and his girlfriend went to Palawan. Now, whenever he goes on trips, he buys me something. And he always gets me something good after I made fun of him 2 years ago.
* * * *
Back in 2010, he went on a trip to Thailand and brought back keychains.
"You know that keychains are the lamest gifts right?" I asked.
Ever since then, he'd bring me something nice. Something I wont make fun off.
* * * *
He seemed bewildered by my request for a starfish.
"Oh, and I want it alive." I added.
"Am I even allowed to bring that through airport security?"
"Don't know. I want a starfish!"
I looked at his girlfriend.
"Kulitin mo siya na bilhan ako ng starfish ha"
"Sige" she replied with a laugh.
"I'll see what I can find but I am not getting you a live starfish." said Derek.
"Fine" I replied.
When he got back from his trip, he called me over to his desk.
He opened his bag and hands me a blue starfish plushie.
I burst out laughing.
"Dont make fun of it. That's more expensive that any other pasalubong I bought."
"No. No. I like it. It's really cute." I said.
It is cute.
I never really thank him enough for the things he has done for me. That's not how he and I do things. What we have is a friendship built on inappropriate jokes and bitching about the stuff around us.
But I got his back and he has mine.
I have very few, emphasis on very, straight guy friends and I'm glad that Derek is one of them because he can actually put up with my goddamn guff.