Verna Aardema’s “Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears” left me questions: did the mosquito lie to the iguana? Or was the mosquito mistaken about what he saw the farmer was digging up? Or was it joke that was unclear or unfinished? Don’t get me wrong. I dislike mosquitoes for obvious reasons. But the story made me pity the poor creature.
We entered through the puerta principal, the large red wooden door. It leads to the zaguan, the passageway of visitors and carruajes and calesas, which in turn ended in the patio, a beautiful space punctuated with flowering plants. The fountain in the middle of the patio served as the roundabout for the carriages. There is also the caballariza, the garage secured by arched bricks where the caruaje is parked.
I wrote something on a wall. I am one of the many who experienced inconvenience at the hands of someone I never thought would make me go through it. Breaking the silence and the inconvenience was difficult. It took me a long while before I could speak about it. My friends were surprised at the truth in my silence.
I was given something I cannot hide
Now I hold too much to get back in my flow
But still, I try to blend in the crowd
As a stranger, I might easier get by
For I’m not fit to put my ventures on the line
Pam and I—predictably—ordered dessert. And we had the same: Panna Cotta with Strawberry. Every spoonful, we laughed louder and harder. The sugar was surely getting to us.
I am one of the many in the metro who commute five days a weeks, twice in a day. I have ridden jeeps, pedicabs, tricycles, buses, trains, calesas, and even the ferry on Pasig River, as well as taxis. There are only few vehicles in the metro I have not boarded, the kuliglig, the padyak on the PNR tracks, and the PNR train—the last one, I’ve made a number of attempts but never get to.
It’s said that, years before the people introduced fishing pens into the area, the waters used to be as clear as crystal. It was even potable. It’s this little piece of information that made me see Tadlac Lake so differently: no algae, no houses or resort around it, no straining the eyes to see the bottom of the lake.
It’s the way that the clouds turn pink
From the day, the night turns quick
And the skyline meets the night sky
My meal arrived warm. And as always, it did not disappoint. It was so good that I wanted it to last for as long it could. But I was too famished to make that happen. I still savored every spoonful. It was a clean blue plate.
It’s a short book and has fairly large text. The engaging illustrations by Mike Casal are nice. What made it difficult to read is my personal awareness of what happened during the Martial Law years. I’ve watched clips. I’ve read stories. I’ve seen the lies and the bias.
I was there for two days: the first and the last. While I have done that before, it’s nice to be reminded of the stark differences between first day and last day. During the first day: there are so many books, including rare tomes and limited editions from specialty stores—you just have to know where to look; some books have discounts and some do not; and you could bump into hardcore readers and/or hoarders. During the last day: book stocks have gone down significantly; the discounts could increase to somewhere between 30% and 50%; and you could bump into people fresh off the streets that are curious about the commotion in the center.
I took all your foolish ways
And I played all your childish games
And we’d never learn to say every time you weren’t so brave
I’d never seen that face
But in my heart, it’s you I crave
You can hate it all you want
You’ll never catch the wind