Friday, August 28, 2009

“Childhood is that wonderful time of life when all you need to do to lose weight is take a bath.”

If I were asked about my childhood, I would probably simply say “I grew up under the sun. And I was happy.” I hold very specific, very vivid memories about growing up that I sometimes wonder if they actually happened or merely imagined.

For instance, I remember clogging the drain of the kitchen sink and opening the faucet because I wanted to fill it up so I can float my paper boats on it later. Only, I left the water running to do my homework and, two hours later, I hear my grandfather scream. I run back to the kitchen and see the whole area flooded. What I remember vividly is walking in knee-deep water on my way to the sink to turn off the faucet. But I’m pretty sure that there was no way the water could have gone up that high if only because the kitchen door was open the whole time and the water would have simply flowed out. Although, did i make up the water level or did i imagine the kitchen door open?

I remember playing with bobby and some of the neighborhood children in our veranda when suddenly the lights went out. We all shout and run towards the stairs. I look back and see, with my own two eyes, a white lady behind the screen door. A lady in white with long black hair floating behind the screen door. I run away and catch up with the rest. This could be true except its uncorroborated. A playmate who also looked back said she didn’t see anything.

I remember other things, weird things about my childhood that I know for sure is true. And because I am older now and also because the weather is just too comfortable and apo hiking society is singing panalangin in the background, I will reminisce.

I remember playing with creatures a lot. Spiders, beetles and snails were favorites. I would pick up a snail from one wall and relocate it to another just to see if it would get disoriented. How I observed snail disorientation is now a mystery to me but I think I came to pretty definite conclusions when I was 4.

I remember having really grown-up food preferences. I hated ice cream. Trips to Magnolia ice cream shop would have me in the middle of my two brothers, both with oddly themed ice cream dishes like sesame street or outer space, and me with my chicken sandwich with extra mayo. I even remember wanting my chicken spread to have lots of onions. I was probably 6 years old. I also liked adobong pusit very much.

I remember being an excellent, let me say that again – EXCELLENT, hulahooper. And I would hulahoop without moving an inch of my hips. The secret, I think, was in the bobbing of my head. I also think there was some serious core muscle contraction going on there but I cant be sure.

I was a happy child. I think we were all happy children my siblings and I. I don’t know how mama and papa managed that. We are also a very happy-go-lucky, bahala-na-si-batman bunch. I don’t know how they managed that as well. It’s both a good thing and an awful thing and going into it right now is completely off topic so I wont.

Anyway, I definitely wouldn’t want to go back to my childhood ever. I wouldn’t mind though a few more memories or pictures or old friends who can add to my memories or give me pictures. Hehe.

Monday, August 03, 2009

The Widow In Yellow (reposted, edited)

She doesn't walk in with a lot of fanfare. There are no fireworks that introduce her, no cheerleaders that trail her. And since she always wears yellow and the biggest smile, she brings the sunshine with her everywhere she goes. And calm - she brings that with her too. An aura of serenity that will not break in battle.

I wonder about her sometimes. About how she went through what she did and still come out smiling in yellow.

She was married to a man she had to share with a country. Was she ever tempted to make him choose - her or his politics, their children or the millions who saw him as their messiah?

And when he finally made his choice, did she feel defeated a little?

She was left to fend for herself, her family and, eventually, her country, under the watchful eye of a public that was as eager to see her fail as they were to see her succeed. She was forced into a foreign arena by the promise and the memory of her dead husband where she had to single-handedly 'restore a democracy' and 'rebuild a nation'.

And My God she must be a good mother. I believe that great mothers do not necessarily produce the best children. Great mothers are great mothers because they can still bring themselves to accept and love the worst in their children. Kris is really lucky.

I really think she's a good woman and I really really wish her all the happiness in the world.