Ms. Universe Catriona Gray was welcomed home by her fellow Pinoys today. Fans eagerly flocked to the streets to wave to the homecoming queen. The parade float plied through the main streets of Pasay, Manila, and Makati, cordoned off accordingly for easy passage.
In the footage, you can hear bystanders and onlookers scream their welcomes for the crowned queen. Many couldn’t help but shriek: “Ang ganda mo!” or “Catriona, I love you!” Catriona kept an undeniably regal but friendly stance throughout the parade.
We figure that wasn’t always easy, especially since the midday sun was extremely intense today. But, the enthusiasm of the crowd kept Catriona going. You see her happily waving back at the screaming crowd, flashing her winning Ms. Universe smile, and replying with a genuinely warm, “Hello! Hi! Salamat po!” in her distinct sweet tone.
We’ve always felt the kilig in Catriona’s soul every time she realizes the gravity of her win. For a country obsessed with pageants and with a people who support their queens wholeheartedly, beauty queens—and their wins—often represent pride, belief, and hope.
The grand homecoming parade is testament to the relationship of Pinoys to their queens, to which Catriona responds in humility: “Philippines! Thank you for celebrating with me! This is a day I’ll never forget, mahal ko kayo sobra sobra.”
We love you, too, Catriona! Mabuhay ka!
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