where good deeds are rewarded with apples & the bad with lemons

Every inch a beauty queen

MJ Lastimosa is every inch a beauty queen.

Claim it, own it, that was what this young lady did. Now the
much-coveted crown and title she has always been dreaming of is finally resting
on her head, and it fits quite perfectly. The Bb. Pilipinas-Universe crown is
very becoming of MJ Lastimosa.
Well-loved. MJ acknowledges a cheering crowd when she was introduced as judge in the 2014 search for Mutya ng City of Mati.
All those who follow the trails of the country’s most
prestigious beauty pageants know that it took three times for MJ Lastimosa to finally
attain her heart’s desire. She dreamt and dreamt big, allowing no doubts to
cross her path, her focus unwavering, MJ eventually landed on top of the heap.
The third time’s the charm.
MJ appears on stage at the Mati City’s search for its new mutya.
When she was pronounced the winner in the recent Binibining
Pilipinas beauty pageant, “Napaiyak ako, di ko talaga napigilan,” confessed MJ over
dinner at the recently concluded 2014 Citihood and Pujada Bay Fest where she
crowned this year’s Mutya ng Mati City. MJ shared how supportive the past
pageant winners were, among them Venus Raj, Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2010 and
Miss Universe 2012 4th runner-up, Shamcy Supsup 2011 and Ms. Universe 2011 3rd
runner-up, and how they were cheering for her when she won. If this story of MJ
was a song it would be “We are family” for truly she could say, ”I got all my
sisters with me.”

Finally, the Bb. Pilipinas-Universe crown. MJ Lastimosa reacts as her dream comes true on the 3rd try. (photo source)
To date, there is still no word when and where the 2014 Miss
Universe beauty pageant will be held but MJ is hoping that it’ll be in some
Latin American country. In the meantime, she is busy fulfilling her duties as
one of the reigning queens for the Binibining Pilipinas Charities, Inc., one of
which was taking part in the inauguration of the Bahay Pag-asa, a home created
for the male juvenile delinquents in Mati City.
“Maka-Bisaya na dyud ko. It’s nice to be in a place where I can speak my Visayan,” said MJ on stage at the coronation night of the Mutya ng City of Mati.

There might be a far bigger reason why MJ Lastimosa found
herself in the capital of Davao Oriental than crowning another beauty queen and
unveiling a place for those in need. Before departing Mati, she may have
received the most inspiring send-off any beauty candidate aiming for a most
coveted crown (and certainly the most elusive since Margie Moran won the Miss
Universe title in 1973) could ever receive from a townsfolk: “It wasn’t too
long ago when Megan Young made it to the shores of Dahican to shoot for a
popular magazine’s summer issue. A few months later, Megan was crowned Miss
World 2013 in Bali, Indonesia (she is the first woman in the Philippines to win
the title). You came to Mati and you will win Miss Universe.”
Beauties all in a row. MJ Lastimosa (center) with the new Mutya ng City of Mati, Arriane Shane Buenviaje, & her court.

Coincidence? Is it the Universe conspiring? Whatever it is,
2014 has been offering life-changing moments for this beauty queen and the
magnificent changes will follow through on the most prestigious international
pageant stage she will be stepping on. True, it has always been ‘almost at my
fingertips’ moments for our past candidates but this year, it will be
Charming, composed, intelligent, beautiful and regal MJ
Lastimosa is every inch a beauty queen, and with her positive outlook plus an
entire country behind her, she will be the next Miss Universe.

For more lifestyle & travel stories, visit http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/ and http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/

Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on June3, 2014.

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