[PHOTO -Aloha: Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos and husband Sen. Ralph Recto with son Ryan Christian go casual in Waikiki, Hawaii]

MANILA, JUNE 21, 2012 (PHILSTAR) FUNFARE By Ricardo F. Lo The Philippine Star Updated June 20, 2012 12:00 AM 0 comment to this post

When she went shopping at Macy’s in Waikiki, Batangas Gov. Vilma Santos was pleasantly surprised when the salesladies, mostly old-timer Filipinas in Hawaii, welcomed her with hugs, telling her, “You’ve been here before! Bata ka pa noon!”

During that first visit on Hawaii years ago, Vi was there to shoot a movie with then screen partner Edgar Mortiz.

This time, from June 9 to 16, Vi was on a well-deserved holiday with husband Sen. Ralph Recto and son Ryan Christian, together with 12 companions that included Ralph’s mom Carmen Recto and her two friends; Ralph’s friends Neal Martinez, Juan Angeles IV and Bimbo Quintos; Vi’s brothers Sonny and Joel with Joel’s friend Yvonne; Vi’s sister Emelyn and daughter Carla; Ryan’s yaya; and Vi’s Girl Friday/accountant Aida Fandialan.

The entourage was billeted at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, a stone’s throw from the Waikiki beach where they spent most of their time.

The last time Vi and Ralph and company went on a holiday was last April in Singapore. On both trips, son Luis Manzano begged off because he was tied up with work.

It was a welcome respite. Ralph had just come from the Corona impeachment trial (he voted “guilty!”) while Vi had just wrapped up her Star Cinema movie The Healing (directed by Chito Roño) and signed up as endorser of The Generics Pharmacy (TGP), the company that sells quality medicines at low prices. Ryan is on summer break from school.

As usual during family outings, whether here or abroad, Vi is just herself, mixing with the crowd like an ordinary person even if fans swarm around her for photo ops and autograph-signing.

“She always obliges,” said Aida, adding, “our group always had dinner together every day.” That is, no matter how tired they were from exploring the island in casuals (like the natives) and from shopping.

Most members of the entourage flew back home last Sunday, June 17. Ralph’s mom and her friends proceeded to San Francisco and will fly to Los Angeles to celebrate her birthday on July 4.

Incidentally, Funfare asked Aida (also Vi’s confidante) if Luis is indeed running (for whatever position) in the 2013 elections.

“I don’t think so,” said Aida with finality.

Which is the same thing that Vi is telling Luis — “Don’t!”

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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