After her Miss Universe journey, a send-off and thanksgiving lunch was organized by a Filipino restaurant in Miami to let Rabiya Mateo know that the Filipinos fully support and love her, even though she did not win the crown.
Everyone wants to take a picture of the Pinay beauty, proof of their love for the Ilongga queen even though she was not lucky enough to win the Miss Universe title.
Mateo reached the semi-finals or Top 21 but was not lucky enough to make it into the Top 10. Miss Mexico took home the Miss Universe title.
“I may fail to bring home the crown, but I still feel like a winner with the warm welcome of the Filipino community here in Miami,” she said.
According to Mateo, she felt mixed emotions.
“After nung pageant, combination din ng emotions. Umpisa nung hindi ako tinawag sa Top 10, I felt sad. But seeing the girls who made it, deserving talaga ang lahat… And I guess, hanggang dun lang talaga yung destiny ko. Pero it’s okay. Marami pa ‘kong kailangang gawin at matulungan,” she said.
Rabiya Mateo plans to enter showbiz after Miss Universe journey
At the end of her Miss Universe journey, she said she will cherish the good memories of her and Miss Universe’s 2nd runner-up Janick Maceta del Castillo of Peru, who she always has with her.
“I remember during the preliminaries, we were praying together. We were lifting all of our worries to God. And sabi namin, whatever success we have, we’re giving it back to the Lord. Siya yung parang sister ko,” said Rabiya Mateo.
Now that she is at the finish line of her Miss Universe journey, what is Mateo’s next plan?
“Maybe I’m gonna take a short break from social media… And after that, I’m planning to go into show business… Acting probably,” she said.