"Nginig na nginig po ako doon. Sabi ko, 'Ba't ako nandito?!'"
It was a night to remember, because Miss Universe Philippines titleholders came together for Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray's Raise Your Flag homecoming concert. In attendance were Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, Miss Universe 2013 third runner-up Ariella Arida, Miss Universe 2011 third runner-up Shamcey Supsup, and Miss Universe 2010 fourth runner-up Venus Raj, among others.
Meanwhile, Maymay was tapped to channel Catriona's winning "lava walk" on the runway. The former Pinoy Big Brother housemate even wore a lava-inspired gown by fashion designer Mak Tumang!
Talking about her experience, the 21-year-old Maymay said that it was Pia who helped shake off her nerves. "Katabi ko si Miss Pia. Si Miss Pia sabi niya, 'Kaya mo iyan, okay lang iyan, relax!' Si Miss Pia talaga yung [nagsabi]sa akin na okay lang kabahan."
Maymay further recalled, "Sabi niya sa akin backstage, 'Okay lang na kabahan ka. Kasi 'pag kinakabahan ka, ibig sabihin may care ka sa sarili mo. Ibig sabihin gusto mong galingan yung mga ginagawa mo.' Kaya ayun natuwa ako. Thank you po, Miss Pia. I love you! Sana magkita tayo ulit!"
Is she open to the idea of joining a beauty pageant after her Miss Universe Philippines fashion show stint?
Laughing, Maymay immediately replied, "Naku, Ma'am! Malabo po yung pang-beauty queen! Hahaha! Hindi ko po siya nakikita talaga, pero maraming salamat sa lahat ng mga naka-appreciate. Salamat na gusto niyo akong beauty queen, may potential daw. Thank you po! Hahaha!"
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other entertainment reporters interviewed Maymay on the sidelines of the media launch for Alamat Ng Ano, one of the digital anthologies produced by Indigital Productions for ABS-CBN's online streaming service iWant. The event was held at Le Reve Events Place on Thursday afternoon, February 24.
Prior to the Raise Your Flag fashion show, Maymay already made her runway debut at the Arab Fashion Week 2018 in Dubai. She opened the fashion show of Dubai-based Filipino designer Furne One for Amato Couture's Pre-Fall 2019 Collection.
But in spite of such opportunities coming her way, Maymay made it clear that she prefers to pursue a career in showbiz rather than fashion modeling. "Hindi naman paninindigan, Ma'am. Kasi kung paninindigan, doon na po talaga ako magfo-focus."
"Pero para sa akin, masaya rin ako kung ano'ng mayroon sa akin dito. Yung modeling na ibinibigay sa akin, bonus iyon sa buhay ko. Kaya dahil doon, tinatanggap ko pa rin siya. Pero hindi talaga doon yung priority ko po."