SM City-Cebu’s Stress-Free Spot

IMG_1297In times like these, one may find rows of cars and motorcycles taking a tour of the mountains– urban guys wanting to take a sip of cool mountain air, visit the hills and discover the pleasure that it holds, hide away from creditors, or just stop connecting with the world. All cellular phones must be on the off-mode. Conversations must be by whispers, or you won’t enjoy listening to the chirping of the birds as they fly from one tree branch to another. On my Yamaha Crypton, it just takes ninety pesos worth of extra unleaded gas to make the trip forth and back–quite cheap a price to pay for the excitement that one gets from mountain touring.

But the city too holds something worthwhile for those in the quiet mode. One lonesome day when I was not busy, I just packed a bag and with wife and grandson in tow got a jeepney for Ayala Mall, and another jeepney for SM City. There is this place my wife has always wanted me to see– a spot at SM City’s North Wing. We picked up three seats that look like upholstered boxes, and watched the man up front playing classical music– Beethoven, Chopin, Strauss, Mozart. Sometimes he replays Ron Miller, John Michael Maceda, John Clayburn or Mer Felix.

My wife Dioly calls it SM City’s Stress-Free Spot.

On that day we already found couples who earlier in the day had staked a claim for their favorite corners around the man playing on the piano.

We never knew who he was.  He must be a retired maestro–his age showed it. But we could never cease admiring his virtuosity on the keyboard. And his music– oh how they soothe the soul seeking for a refrain from the cares of the world.

We never paid anything for listening to the man’s music. But he gets there everyday, on time, as if moved by a habit. It cannot be denied that he too enjoys the admiration that we shower on him. His music, like all music one hears from every virtuoso from every nation, speaks one language we all understand.

This must be like heaven too, or perhaps less like it, where the disciples of the Lamb would be singing their hosannahs to the One who once died for them and now is sitting on his throne in the midst of them. Their music glorifies His majesty as he sits there. It would be the music of victory, the praises of those who have conquered all things in His name.

That spot up there is Heaven’s Stress-Free Spot, much better and grander and nobler than the one we know or see or experience as we struggle over pain or stand astride over every hardship and difficulty the world brings. There the music makers will find oneness with the One whom their music exalts. Imagine a throng of singers innumerable with their hearts beating as one while the heaven trembles with their chants of adoration! Hallelujah! Amen and Amen!


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