Paco: No problem with KC

FUNFARE - Ricky Lo -
As he did last year, Paco Arespacochaga slipped quietly into the country from L.A. (where he is based with his wife Tiny Ambrosio) Wednesday last week for a two-week vacation.

"My son Heaven celebrated his 11th birthday last Saturday and I didn’t want to miss it for anything in the world," Paco told Funfare in an exclusive interview. "I was here also last year to visit Heaven."

Heaven is Paco’s son with ex-wife Geneva Cruz who is now married to KC Montero. Geneva is in the US for a concert tour, leaving KC a single parent to Heaven since January.

"I have no problem with KC," said Paco who’s staying with his in-laws.

In fact, in the absence of Geneva, it was Paco and KC who organized Heaven’s birthday party held at Timezone in Greenhills. Paco, Geneva and KC, like Demi Moore and husband Ashton Kutcher and ex-husband Bruce Willis, are into a "live and let live" set-up. It’s not uncustomary for them to be seen together (sometimes with — why not? — Paco’s wife Tiny).

"Sobrang bait ni KC sa anak ko," added Paco. "He treats Heaven as his own son. He’s doing a good job. I keep reminding Heaven, ‘I’m your dad but we have to follow KC because you’re living with him. He also loves you very much.’ When he has any problem with Heaven, KC never decides by himself. He calls me, ‘Paco, what shall we do? Tell me what to do?’ I have no problem with KC."

And same with Geneva.

When Geneva and KC married in a very private ceremony in Seattle, USA, more than two years ago, Paco was among the first to know.

"But Gen asked me not to tell anybody about it, so I kept it a secret," said Paco. (It was The STAR which Geneva and KC entrusted with the "scoop" of revealing everything, complete with their wedding photos, last January after Geneva left for the US.)

Asked if, being a long-distance father, he hasn’t been remiss in his obligations to Heaven, Paco said, "I can do more but I’m doing only what they ask me to do."

Every day at 1:30 p.m. (Manila Time), Paco calls Heaven without fail.

"Kesehodang wala na kaming mapag-usapan,"
smiled Paco, "basta tinatawagan ko siya. Before 1:30 p.m., Heaven sits by the phone and waits for my call. Expected niya ang call ko."

Paco left the Philippines in 2001, several months after he and Geneva separated. Their marriage was annulled long after that. On the strength of an extraordinary-ability visa, Paco is a green card-holder and legally a US citizen, along with wife Tiny.

How soon will he and Tiny have their own child?

"Soon. It’s included in our immediate plans."

Besides visiting Heaven, Paco’s other purpose on his recent homecoming is to promote New Beginnings, the album he and his Introvoys recently recorded in the US.

"Yes," Paco happily reported, "the Introvoys have regrouped. It was easy because, like me, the four other boys are holders of extraordinary-ability visas and are now based in the US."

They are: Steve Guadiz, guitarist, a physical therapist; Chot Ulep, bassist, a stock broker; Jonathan Buencamino, vocals; and JJ Buencamino, keyboards. (Paco is the drummer.)

"We’re happy because we perform not only in the US but also in other countries. We get offers from Vancouver and as far as Munich."

Paco is going back to L.A. on Monday, March 26.

All systems go for Margaret Wilson

As usual and as expected, a controversy (this time only a minor one) followed the Bb. Pilipinas search for the country’s representatives to Miss Universe (Anna Theresa Licaros), Miss International (Nadia Lee Cian Shami) and Miss World pageants, with Margaret "Maggie" Wilson (World) in the eye of the storm.

Some people questioned her eligibility because they said that Maggie was only a senior and not yet a high school graduate (as the contest criteria required). But it becomes moot and academic because Margaret is graduating from high school before she flies to Poland to compete in the Miss World pageant, the only international contest the Philippines hasn’t won.

Here’s the update on Maggie, from Funfare’s "beauty experts" Felix Manuel, Joey Cezeare, Gery Yumping and Francis Calubaquib:

We talked to Margaret last March 14, eve of her 18th birthday, during a surprise party hosted by beauty-queen-maker Rodgil Flores and pageant connoisseur Kaloy Valera.

"I’m happy that everything is okay now," Maggie told us. "My manager, Neil de Guia, and I have spoken with the lawyers of BPCI (Binibining Pilipinas Charities, Inc.) and, yes, my crown rests secure on my head. I’m now preparing for the Miss World pageant to be held in Poland in July. I have postponed some showbiz commitments to concentrate on my preparation for the pageant. I will study Polish and I have to keep abreast of what’s happening around the world. I really hope that I could bring home the only crown not yet won by our country. I will do my very best."

Well, what can we say but, "Good luck, Maggie!"

(E-mail reactions at [email protected])

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