Pia happy to be home, ready for hectic sked

Ricky Lo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Despite a long flight from New York to Jakarta for a pre-set event on Friday, 2015 Miss Universe Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach arrived at the NAIA Terminal II at 6 o’clock yesterday morning via PAL flight 538 looking as radiant as she was on Dec. 20 in Las Vegas when she ended the country’s 42-year drought and brought back the Miss U title last won by Margie Moran in 1973.

“I’m so happy, I was not able to sleep last night because I was excited to come home. I don’t want to reveal too much about my experiences because I want to save those for the press conference tomorrow (Sunday). I’m glad to be home. It feels like I’m going to compete again,” Wurtzbach said.

“Every time I would think about my trip back here, I would, you know, tear up a little bit, because I feel like it’s been so long. I have so many things to share and I can’t wait to share it all with you,” she added.

Pia was accompanied by Ester Swan and James Wilmoth, the manager and security officer provided for her by the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) headed by Paula Shugart, who is scheduled to arrive tonight from the US.

Pia’s mom, Cheryl Alonzo Tindell, is arriving from England where she is based to keep Pia company during her homecoming.

As soon as she checked into the Novotel Hotel at the Araneta Center in Quezon City where she will be billetted during her week-long visit, Pia ordered room service for her first homecoming breakfast.

“Pia is ready for her tight schedule,” a source at the Bb. Pilipinas Charities, Inc. (BPCI) told The STAR. “She’s very excited and eager to see her family and to thank her kababayans for their support and prayers.”

Waking up from a well-deserved sleep, Pia prepared for a Unilever event at the World Trade Center. Then she went back to the hotel to rest.

Today, Pia will preside over a press conference for local and foreign media (who purposely flew in to cover the Miss U visit) at the grand ballroom of Novotel starting at 4 p.m.

Tomorrow, she will have a ticker-tape parade starting at 2 p.m. at the vicinity of Sofitel Hotel where she will have lunch at 12:30 p.m.

The parade is expected to end at 5 p.m. at the Araneta Center where she will be honored with fireworks. Then, she’ll make a stopover at the green gate of the Araneta Coliseum where children from charitable institutions will offer her flowers.

On Tuesday, Pia will pay a courtesy call on President Aquino in Malacañang at 10 a.m. and on Quezon City Mayor Herbert Bautista, Manila Mayor Erap Estrada and Makati Mayor Romulo Pena Jr. in the afternoon.

She will also visit the House of Representatives where she will be given a medal of distinction.

Wednesday will be spent at charity events, including a visit to the Soldiers Hospital and the HIV Charity Section, both at V. Luna Hospital. Pia’s advocacy is to help in the HIV/AIDS awareness campaign and against cyber bullying.

From 8 to 11 p.m. on the same day, she will be the guest at a PLDT event.

Thursday will be a rest day for Pia in preparation for the rehearsal for a homecoming show in the evening.

On Saturday, she will act as bridesmaid at the wedding of her best friend Pauleen Luna to Vic Sotto at the St. James the Great Church in Ayala Alabang. It was BPCI head Stella Marquez-Araneta who requested the MUO to extend Pia’s visit so she could attend the wedding.

Pia had sent her measurements for the gown she’s wearing to the wedding, from New York, her home during her year-long reign.

On Sunday night, Pia will fly back to San Francisco via Philippine Airlines to resume her Miss U activities. – Rudy Santos















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