MANILA -- Dindi Pajares has nothing but gratitude as she prepares to represent the Philippines in the Miss Supranational 2021 pageant.
The beauty queen from Bataan was named Miss Supranational Philippines over the weekend after receiving the highest number of votes from her fellow candidates at Miss World Philippines.
Pajares opened up about her pageant journey, which started at the age of 10, as she thanked all those who have supported her.
Admitting that she grew up losing in pageants for the past 18 years, she felt she used to feel she "did not belong" with the other women on stage.
"I started joining beauty pageants at the age of 10. In the 18 years that I have been competing before Miss World Philippines, l — I have always lost," she said in an Instagram post.
"In all those times I was on the stage with some of the most beautiful women, I felt like I didn’t belong. After my last pageant, I decided to take a break from chasing my dreams of having my own crown and becoming a beauty queen," she added.
Pajares said she was ready to live a life away from pageantry, until a Europe trip in 2019 brought her back on track.
"That year, I chanced upon the Trevi fountain in Italy, and, as all travelers do, I made a wish to ask for guidance on my new path in life away from pageantry and as all Trevi wishers do, to travel back to Europe," she said.
"Little did I know that after two years, I will be crowned Miss Supranational Philippines 2021 and will, in fact, be flying back to Europe to compete for the Miss Supranational 2021 for my beloved country!"
Pajares is set to leave the Philippines on August 3, ahead of the August 21 coronation night of Miss Supranational 2021 in Poland.
Miss World Philippines 2021 has been rescheduled to August 8, after the government placed the National Capital Region and four other areas under general community quarantine with heightened restrictions.