Tuesday, July 21, 2009
We decided to have dinner at Jollibee, our favorite spot. She was already there when I arrived, clad on a long sleeved blouse and with that black bag I have never yet. Well, it was just the same old menu: crispy fried chicken and spaghetti in thick sauce. Then there were exchange of stories about each one of us, the rumors that seem to be part of us, and then some plans for our next meet ups. We usually plan to see each other again the next day or two or the coming weekend; albeit some plans rather end up as plans and never really happen due to some reasons.
Just the same, I am thankful. I could not be happier. I feel complete once again.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
“Have you seen my Childhood?
I’m searching for the world that I
’Cause I’ve been looking around
In the lost and found of my heart …
No one understands me
They view it as such strange eccentricities …
’Cause I keep kidding around
Like a child, but pardon me
People say I’m not okay
’Cause I love such elementary things …
It’s been my fate to compensate, for the
I’ve never known
Have you seen my Childhood?
I’m searching for that wonder in my youth
Like pirates and adventurous dreams,
Of conquest and kings on the throne...
Before you judge me, try hard to love me,
Look within your heart then ask,
Have you seen my Childhood?
People say I’m strange that way
’Cause I love such elementary things,
It’s been my fate to compensate,
for the Childhood I’ve never known...
Have you seen my Childhood?
I’m searching for that wonder in my youth
Like fantastical stories to share
The dreams I would dare, watch me fly …
Before you judge me, try hard to love me.
The painful youth I’ve had
Have you seen my Childhood?”
Thursday, June 25, 2009
I dreamed I had an interview with God.
“So you would like to interview me?” God asked.
“If you have the time” I said.
God smiled. “My time is eternity.”
“What questions do you have in mind for me?”
“What surprises you most about humankind?”
“That they get bored with childhood,
they rush to grow up, and then
long to be children again.”
“That they lose their health to make money...
and then lose their money to restore their health.”
“That by thinking anxiously about the future,
they forget the present,
such that they live in neither
the present nor the future.”
"That they live as if they will never die,
and die as though they had never lived.”
God’s hand took mine
and we were silent for a while.
And then I asked...
“As a parent, what are some of life’s lessons
you want your children to learn?”
“To learn they cannot make anyone
love them. All they can do
is let themselves be loved.”
“To learn that it is not good
to compare themselves to others.”
“To learn to forgive
by practicing forgiveness.”
“To learn that it only takes a few seconds
to open profound wounds in those they love,
and it can take many years to heal them.”
“To learn that a rich person
is not one who has the most,
but is one who needs the least.”
“To learn that there are people
who love them dearly,
but simply have not yet learned
how to express or show their feelings.”
“To learn that two people can
look at the same thing
and see it differently.”
“To learn that it is not enough that they
forgive one another, but they must also forgive themselves.”
"Thank you for your time," I said humbly.
"Is there anything else
you would like your children to know?"
God smiled and said,
“Just know that I am here... always.”
Friday, June 19, 2009
It's 4:21 AM and my writing tasks are done. I could not think of any thing better to do than update this blog and tell online readers who chance upon my blog that I am simply thankful for yesterday- another Friday.
I remember. I have already wrote about Fridays and how they appeal to me. But yesterday which was Friday has another story to tell. Alright, let me start the ordeal.
I arrived home almost 8AM and there was this lady who was selling native delicacies. She regularly comes with a basket of these foods every morning, but it was only yesterday that I decided to try on some of these delicacies. I had it for breakfast along with beef-flavored instant noodles and I think it was a delicious pair. Might as well try it again tomorrow.
I know nothing is so special with having such food for breakfast. These are very ordinary foods any one can get from the market. But let me tell you. The taste of that rice delicacy reminded me of my childhood trips to my maternal grandparents' home. It had a familiar taste and texture which I have not had for almost two decades now. The lady who used to sell those rice cakes to my lolo daddy and lola mommy no longer lives in my grannies' neighborhood and no one has ever come up with something similar to those rice cakes she made.
The evening gave me more reasons to be thankful. When I entered Jollibee to have my dinner, Jollibee, the mascot, welcomed me with a warm hug and awakened the child in me. I was so overwhelmed and was laughing. I was very happy. I was not expecting such welcome and that hug. You see, that was the first time I had such surprise in my entire life.
I texted my closest friends about the Jollibee surprise and, not yet contented, I decided to go home and share the story and my pictures with Jollibee the mascot. I was really happy and I still am until this day.
Surprises. Simple pleasures. Thanks for all these blessings.
Thursday, June 18, 2009
My dad likes old cars, albeit tuned up with tires full for optimal performance (and gas mileage). He can’t pass a sock sale without buying five pairs, although he has drawers full of them. And he recently discovered Sam’s Club, where he likes to buy my children lots of plastic toys made in China.
But when I was a kid, things were different. Although my dad grew up in a white-bread family and a small midwestern town, as an adult he was adopted as a blood brother to the patriarch of a Lakota Sioux clan. In the late ‘60s, he started teaching the novels and poetry of Native American writers to students in his English classes; eventually he co-founded the Native American Studies Program at UCLA. When I was five, he caravanned a group of these students from California to North Dakota, meeting Native American writers and elders along the way. I remember a Monarch butterfly that landed on my finger at Sitting Bull’s gravesite and stayed that way for the next two hundred miles.
So as an adult, I never thought of my dad as much of an environmentalist. But then I started looking at the ways my life has changed in the last few years, and I realize that much of the inspiration comes directly from him.
Take the garden, for example. As a child growing up in the canyons of Los Angeles, we planted corn, tomatoes, salad and squash; even when he lived in a condominium, my father had edible plants growing on the balcony.
And he doesn’t just grow them to eat: My dad believes in the power of plants. If you cut your finger, he’ll offer you an aloe vera leaf. Feeling under the weather? He’ll brew up some foul-smelling concoction of Chinese herbs. On important days—my wedding day, and the first time he met each of his three grandchildren—my dad will sprinkle our heads with corn pollen as he says a prayer to the four directions.
But most importantly, my father taught me that plants—and all living things, really—deserve our respect. That when you cut a flower or an herb you should give the plant some water or food in return, and thank the plant for what it gave you. And he helps me pass these lessons on to my children.
There are some childhood habits that die hard, however. My father now buys organic milk when we come to visit, but he still likes his meat bought in bulk and eaten daily. He does not believe that my Green Wash Ball can actually get his clothes clean. He stocks up on antibacterial soap and scoffs at my inspection of shampoo labels when he sends my kids to shower at his house. And regardless of how many times I talk with him about the dangers of chemicals in cleaning products and fertilizer, he still cleans his tub with Tilex and douses his weeds with Round-Up.
But hopefully, just as his lessons changed my life, mine might change his someday.
Friday, January 9, 2009
The second sign of the zodiac
Your element: earth
Your ruling planet : Venus
The tarot card corresponding to your sign : the emperor
Your lucky color : green
Your stone : emerald
Your earth, the element of your sign, is an earth that sows seed. This is an agrarian soil of nature where gain is realized, felt, and experienced sensually. It is this soil that you impregnate with everything that is to be a Taurus. You love nature where you find an exaultation of the senses. Your well-developed senses love the perfume of flowers. You have a natural ability to communicate with animals. You love to experience, first hand, all that nature has to offer.
Your earthy nature makes for a very sensual, physical, carnal being. No platonic lovers for you! However, you need lots of stability. You run the risk of experiencing great pain if this stability does not exist or is in question. You take your time before making any decisions and you rarely change your mind. You work with tenacity and patience, but you are often not rewarded as much as you deserve to be. The fact is that, contrary to the other signs, you don't know how to put yourself first.
Your qualities are not always recognized at face value. In love, for example, you give a great deal of yourself, but others just seem to take this for granted and do not appreciate your efforts. During physical activities it is the same. You always accomplish everything you do, but you do it discreetly, so that you are not rewarded the responsibility or success that you should have.
During your relationships, friendship or love, you are completly faithful. If you give your affection and your commitment, if is for ever. You give a great deal of youself and you are very disappointed at any kind of deception, and completely disarmed before mistakes and failures.
Venus brings you much sensuality and charm. You have a magnetism that endowes you with a gift for Love. However, you are not frivolous. Just the opposite! Your need for stability and security makes you prefer longlasting relationships.
Your faults often stem from your character. Your steadfastness may become inactivity. You have trouble adapting to new situations, crossing into unchartered waters, making quick decisions. Having several things on the go at once makes you nervous.
Your connection with other signs:
You have more chance of getting along with other steadfast signs. For example, Aries, Virgo and other Tauruses. You should however be on guard against anyone with air and water signs, particularly Geminis and Scorpios, who do attract you.
This brief but frank analysis will help you make appropriate decisions in your life. Study it well so that you can take full advantage and maximize your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.
Those who succeed, no matter the situation, are those who consciously or unconsciously take maximum advantage of their trump cards, their successes, their strengths, and know when to exert self-control in moments of weakness.
Thursday, January 8, 2009
I never understood why mothers, mine for instance, nag at no end, excluding the big question of where they got the energy to do so. It's simply tiring - a fact I can attest to. I have tried yanking once - with nobody to listen of course - just to get the feel of it.
I went around washing the dishes, doing the laundry and clearing up all the mess saying the very same words my mother whines about when she does the chores. I guess it comes with being a mother, especially when you have five little devils scampering about.
It has been said that the essence of being a woman is being a mother. I got my chance to prove my importance to the world when my cousin asked me to baby sit for her three kids who are everything but babies. They look so quiet harmless, angelic even, unless of course you have to deal with them for ten agonizing hours.
Anyway, eager to test my rehearsed mother-like speeches, I agreed to watch over the kids for a day. My mind was conditioned to be patient and compassionate, we started out just fine. They greeted me with wet smooches leaving a trail of saliva dripping down my cheeks and an ear shuttering "auntie!! Auntie!!!"
Oh dear! I couldn't have felt more like a mother on that moment. Sniffle...sniffle.
My cousin left with directions to give the children a bath, where to find things and what to cook for lunch. Then it's just me against Tarzan, Jane and mighty Spiderman.
Everything was relatively peaceful - me, trying to give them my sunniest smile, and them, trying to gauge what my smile was for.
I was giving Spiderman a good scrubbing when suddenly Jane hollered, jarring me out of my senses. Naturally, I hurried out of the bathroom expecting Frankenstein on our front door for an early morning trick or treat. And much to my chagrin, found out Tarzan, deciding to make his makeshift jungle a bit changed, grabbed the screen off the window frame.
How I am going to explain that later is but one of the problems - the war has just begun.
Everybody miraculously pacified and restrained, we all watched Cow and Chicken on TV. I could not have been more thankful to Cartoon Network and was contemplating on nominating them for a Nobel Prize when the gods of the electric cooperative decided to alter my predestined fate - there was a damn power interruption. No TV, no electric fan, one helluva trip to Sahara desert - and the surrealistic day of reckoning came to mind.
With my sole ally out of the picture, the angels from 7th heaven resorted to playing house with pillows for their humble abode. A few minutes after which, a passionate pillow fight ensued. I surprised myself of the vast number of saints I know as I prayed for dear life trapped between the Knights of the Pillow Kingdom while confetti of feathers, cottons and pillowcases filled the bedroom.
I resolutely made a promise never to give mom a scornful look again. Never again...
Lunch forgotten and the first rush of adrenaline all used up, I somehow managed to coax them to try sleeping for a change. My arms numb from doing all the fanning which an electric fan could have done with grace, I felt the beginning of a wrinkle in my face. My ultra active sweat glands would not stop excreting all the fluids out of my poor body, then hibernation despite of the heat set in.
everything came to a halt; my senses dulled, I allowed myself to drift to the magical world of dreamland where Tarzan and Cinderella fell in love with the world.
But then, life has its way of jarring you back to reality. Just when I was about to be kissed by my prince charming, I wake up to the unmistakable sound of a Neanderthal giving his vocal chords the task of a lifetime. It was Tarzan, reincarnated in the jungle of bed sheets and chairs...the scenario went on that way for another ten minutes; I was on another planet off the Milky Way galaxy as the kids - oblivious of my screaming - started World War II in an oven all over again.
I imagined time - which is never on my side (another paradox of life) jeering at my obvious helplessness. The Creed mockingly sang "Hey God, I know I am just a dot in this world, have you forgot about me?” I longed to ask God the same. I prayed (to whom it may concern) for time to fly.
The Gods must have heard my earnest pleas - for before I ludicrously acted like a wretched heroine in a soap opera, I saw my cousin around - with her round, puffed up face materialize from the portals of heaven. Nothing can be more welcoming for such site.
That day was arguably the most enlightening in all of my more than twenty years of existence. I found out why moms can be one hell of a nagger, had quick sojourn to hell, hibernated amidst the tropical heat and experienced how it's like to be a mother for a day.
Serious though, I realized that what our mothers do for us is irreplaceable. Their occasional nagging is nothing compared to the headaches we give them with our every little devious antics.
Now, now, before I make you all cry, I think I'd just give a mom a break she truly deserves when she comes (or when I go to her house) - I got this fabulous idea of doing all the household chores for a week - minus the nagging of course.