From Timeline as usual

By Estanislao Albano, Jr.

“Not the type who baldly tell people to go away, I tried a tack straight from my childhood when boys took offense at the slightest reference they are gays.”

Copy pasting from my Timeline is no way to start a writing year but it so happens that am loaded with work more than usual so my Facebook friends who also read this column, please bear with me one more time. Promise I will dish out something exclusive for this column starting next week.
(With photo of three boys playing with the flower plantation in the background)
A while ago I accompanied Fujiyo Sakai, our main lensman in the Tabuk City LGU, to the Tade Flower Plantation in Dagupan Weste as he wanted to take some shots himself after seeing my album on the flowers on Facebook. As we entered the plantation, two of these boys followed us and watched us as we clicked away. Fearing that they might do something foolish and that the Tades might blame us for occasioning their entry into the flower plantation, I automatically decided that they could not linger there. Not the type who baldly tell people to go away, I tried a tack straight from my childhood when boys took offense at the slightest reference they are gays.
Me: “Ubbing, dagiti ngay lallaki a kaykayatda ti sabong ket bading.” (Children, boys who like flowers are gays.)
The boys hesitate, look at each other then one of them said: “Intan aglawlawa.” (Let’s go look for spiders.)
They leave the plantation.
This super long vacation just ended for me with a hug from Pia Ursula at the bus station minutes ago. She said “Agsingsingpetka, saanmo nga ap-appaen ni Mama ken aginnawka.” (You be a good boy, don’t quarrel with Mama and wash the dishes.)
Like I have already told you before, I seldom drive my motorcycle beyond 60 km per hour. My usual speed is 30-40 kph and sometimes, I go down to as slow as 20 km. Florence and the girls specially Pia Ursula complain about my slow speed at times. That happened this evening when Pia and I went to the flower farm of Willord Tade at Dagupan Weste which is in bloom and took a joy ride along the road to Bulanao then through the Nasgueban area on the way home. At one point, she asked me what my speed was and I said it was 20 kph. She then told me that people laugh when she relates that kuligligs (hand tractor cum trailers which maximum speed might be 30 kph or even slower) sometimes pass me by. That of course is an exaggeration but it reminded me of that instance some years ago while she and I were going to Bulanao. She was seated facing the left and did not see it when we overtook a kuliglig.
Pia: Pa, pimmaspaska a. (Pa, you are driving faster.)
Me (failing to understand her meaning right away): Apay a kunam dayta? (Why do you say that?)
Pia: Adda met naovertake mo. (You overtook someone.)
Me: Mangloklokoka? Kuliglig daydiay. (Are you kidding me? That was a kuliglig.)
(Accompanied by photo of Christmas tree made of newspaper)
Yesterday evening when we visited Mama, Aglaia Marie took note of their Christmas tree made of Zigzag Weekly copies. The Zigzag Weekly is the Cordillera paper I write for. I deliver the paper to Mama regularly. Those who read my posts know that to Aglaia Marie, my being a journalist is a butt of joke. To refresh, one time I chided Florence for asking for copies of the paper to start a fire and Aglaia Marie butted in: “Apay adda pay sabali nga usar ti Zigzagmo, Papa?” (Is there any other use for your Zigzag, Papa?)
Lastnight she kept repeating while taking photos of the Christmas tree: “Adda met gayam usar ti Zigzag.” (There is use for Zigzag after all.)
Like I have been telling you all along, I am no match to Aglaia Marie when it comes to wit and 10 to 2, she would always get the better of me in an exchange. One of my sweetest triumphs against her albeit unintended happened while she was in third year at the Benguet State University. In one visit, I walked her into the building where her class was that afternoon. As she entered the building, I offered my cheek to her and said “Kiss Papa” the way I used to do when she leaves for school during her nursery days. Expectedly, instead of kissing my cheek, she made a face at me and ran into the building.
When she came home to the boarding house after classes, she was in a foul mood. Turns out that some of her classmates witnessed the scene at the door of their building and “Kiss Papa” became an expression in their class that entire afternoon.
Yesterday was the Christmas celebration at Appas Elementary School. After the program, the classes had separate parties. At one point at the Grade VI-Venus, some pupils who were standing at the door called to Florence that a classmate had something for her. When Florence looked, Juan (not real name as I failed to catch the name) was holding a live chicken. Florence was suspicious right away because the feet of the chicken were not tied together and the classmates were laughing.
Florence: Juan, nangtiltiliwam dita? (Juan, where did you catch that?)
Juan (after a while): Ma’am, ditoy eskuelaan. Naamo ngamin. (Ma’am, in school. It is tame.)
A neighbor’s chicken sometimes stray into the campus.
A believer in the scenario that the teacher must always have the last word, here goes Florence –
Florence: No talaga ka met laeng Juan, idiay balay yo ti pagtiliwam ti manok. (Juan, if you are really true to yourself, you catch a chicken at home.)
Juan: Sige Ma’am. Iyegko no bigat. (Yes, Ma’am. I will bring it tomorrow.)
We will see today which is the faculty and barangay council’s joint Christmas party at Appas who the joke is on – Florence or Juan.
Note: Juan did not bring any.**

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