I had a not so exciting life back then in SPI, used to work as a records processing asst. for HR. My daily routine was work from 6am to 2pm – 1st shift, then work extra hours after 2 pm until late evening, then go home, sleep and wake up the next morning to do the same thing again. The only fun and excitement I would have in our daily office life was during break times at the canteen spent with my friends/colleagues in HR. I did not have any social life out of the HR circle as interactions with other employees would be only during times when they would approach me on certain requests regarding their benefits and employee status concerns…until one uneventful day, one colleague mentioned that she’s joined a group of employees in Pre-press dept, that they had a great time, experiencing the outdoors and mountaineering. They we’re recruiting new members back then, being so bored with the monotonous routine, I signed-up with my best friend, who was the HR director’s secretary that time.

The first time we we’re introduced with the head of the group and members for our orientation, I had no idea that my life was going to change big-time! We were so excited for the first climb to Mt. Romelo in Laguna the 21st October 2000. 

We were all prepared in every aspect that we we’re told to prepare for during the pre-climb orientation…well I thought I was, but then there was one thing I was not  prepared for, which was the unexpected and it has brought about one of the most beautiful and most significant change in my life.

The first climb for me was the greatest of all the climbs I have joined, amidst the struggle we had climbing such a muddy trail, it did not break our spirits, for the first time I was doing something exciting. What an extraordinary experience, got to know great people who became very special friends, almost like brothers and sisters to me, who up to now are still the best of friends I ever had, wherever they may be now, even the great distance can’t alter the friendship we all share.

Amazing how your life can change. Some may call it fate but I see it more as my destiny. After almost a decade of climbing mountains, appreciating nature’s beauty and living the life of a true mountaineer, we are now blessed with 2 nature loving “offsprings”, Daniel and DJ. Daniel has started mountaineering when he was 2y/o and has summited Mt. Pulag at the age of 5 while DJ will be making his first climb soon. 

I may not be climbing mountains where I am now but the heart of a mountaineer is within me and memories of those times will forever be cherished and remembered always!

My name is Lily Reyes-Macayan, batch Alpha, employee number AH09 and this is my story as an SPI mountaineer.
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