Serendipitously surrendering to the call of a lazy Saturday midnight snack, I got into reading the May 2013 digital issue of Metro Society in between bites of cookie-butter toast and sipping my staple ice-cold green tea. The cover girl – who we only know as a Miss Universe daughter – interested me a lot.
The last time I saw Monica Moran Floirendo in person was way back New Year’s Day 2000 when she was having breakfast with family members at the Peninsula Manila. She was still a budding teenager of 13 years but already showing beautiful physical features that give justice to her being the daughter of Margarita Moran. Since then, the young lady has blossomed and her entry to adulthood sprinkled with so many life adventures that distanced her farther and farther away from embarking on anything in the guise of a pageant route. Aside from finishing tertiary studies (and staying in a boarding school prior) at the University of Bristol in the UK, she has spent years in interval living in the US, Europe and South America (Patagonia, Chile in particular). In the Philippines, her main home base has always been Davao where the Floirendo’s banana plantation continues to rake in good money.
Now a near-complete young woman at the age of 26, Monica will soon be tying the knot with fiance Keenan Ugarte. Her altar date is set for 2014. Whatever time is left in single blessedness will most likely be utilized to help the family in their various businesses and charities.
While we all harp on the mother-daughter tandem of Gloria Diaz and Isabelle Daza to fulfill a Miss Universe succession, Margarita and Monica have successfully pried themselves away from the public eye and effectively assumed normalcy in their existence. Credit goes to the elder one for not being lured by the klieg lights, save for occasional appearances on TV.
In the process, Monica has indeed carved a life of her own. And a personally satisfying one at that.
All photos courtesy of Metro Society May 2013 digital issue.