For one last time, I want to insist the claim of being your favorite grandchild. For all my shortcomings, I know you couldn’t be prouder of my achievements in life. You and Lola were always part of it.
As I wrote this memoir, tears flooded by my eyes amid mix feelings of how to react upon hearing that you passed away. I just don’t know if I would be happy that you finally be joining Lola Nesing. Or be sad that you ultimately bid goodbye to us.
All I have now are recollections of your powerful influence and memories in my life.
The nostalgia when you brought me to “bukid” during summer. The recollection on how you taught me to plant rubber trees, upland rice, corn, coffee, and other fruit trees.
The reminiscence of our trek in the hinterlands of Zamboanga del Sur and Zamboanga del Norte. The thrill on how we slept for days under the forest floors in search of new farmlands. I still remember lying on my “banig” while you taught me to count the stars above.
Oh, I still recall how we bought a piece of land from the natives for half a sack of rice. The recollection of you teaching me to ride and tame carabaos and horses. The time when crossed with rebel soldiers on our mountain trails.
You taught me how to setup traps, to haunt, and to shoot as you prefer to bring only “salt” on our long mountain trek.