A cool mist of sea-side air mixed with an early morning autumn monsoon rain, caressed the skin on my face, and competed with the ocean waves crashing into my ears. The Philippine sea hugged the shoreline below, and from my balcony perch I could tell from its’ turbulent nature that a Northeasterly had blown-in from Japan. Salty sea-spray seemed to invade my mouth every time I attempted to steal a warm sip of bitter-sweat coffee from my cup. My newborn daughter in my arms, my nose close to her head, her aroma of newness over-powering all the rest. A smile, a giggle, her tiny hand on my arm, her big brown eyes discovering the world around us with fascination. She had no means to express her thoughts about the mysteries of life around her, but her face told me all I needed to know. How was it possible for her to already have an appreciation for family, nature, and the delicate sensations of a morning breeze blowing through her hair and across her face at such an early age? I realized at that moment, that I held the greatest mystery of all in my arms. So I set my cup upon the concrete cobblestone balcony ledge, hugged her tightly in my big arms, and smiled as she squealed with delight, shared my smile, and pulled at my hairy goatee. I was then informed by my “maganda asawa” that it was too cold, wet, and windy to be out on the balcony with the baby. Fortunately, my daughter and I hastily escaped the clearly legitimate nagging of my wife, to seek shelter from her and the elements within the confines of our own “fortress of solitude” before “nappy-nappy” time. But I could tell from Aurora’s facial expressions, and her vocal protests as we crossed over the thresh-hold to the stagnant quiet and calm of the kitchen, that we would have both preferred to have stayed out on the balcony sensing all the world’s wonders for just a little longer.