Many important national events have happened these past two weeks but I'll be very parochial in my post today. I'll skip the national events and focus on only one event - the welcome dinner for our balik-bayan parochial classmate.
Six of us, DPS Class 67 Manila-based members made it to the dinner for Glen and her husband Robert. “Us” includes Alot, Baby, Bert, Ebo, me, and dya-yannn….. Tess, who came just when we were about to call it a night…. So, kodakan na lang ang inabot niya.
Except for Alot who was still Glen’s schoolmate in college, it was our first time to meet her after 41 years since high school graduation. She’s now a proud lola of five grandchildren from two daughters, and more apos to come from the soon-to-be married son. She proudly showed us pictures of her “apos”….. take note…. Hindi na pictures ng mga anak…. Mga apo na! So, the tres marias of our high school days – Marybeth, Susan, and Glen are all proud lolas now! Lucky for Glen, additional pounds to her weight and cm to her waist did not come proportional to her age. She looks trim….. and... slenda….. must be doing a lot of exercise!
We were at the farthest end of the restaurant beside the wall, so it was the best place to engage in conversation without having to raise our voices. Time for updating. We got to know that Glen held a teaching job at the UST for 16 years until 1989, before migrating to Canada. It’s only now that I learned that we were in the same campus for three years from 1983 to 1986 but never got to see each other. (I held office at the mezzanine floor of the UST main building - Research office of the Association of Catholic Universities of the Philippines- and taught in the evening at the Arts and Letters.)
Glen continues to teach in Canada. (Bert asked her which teaching method she has adopted – that of Sor Victorina? Ms. Segui/Mrs. Lunario, Idnani’s, Maderazo’s or Ms. Bermillo’s style?)
We also got to know her husband, Robert, who like Willy (Bautista) seems at ease and enjoys the company of his wife’s classmates. Welcome to the group! We now have four honorary members – Marie (Padrigon), Ineng (Surla), and Willy and Robert.
We learned about the couple’s previous sad homecomings, when death in the family was their reason for going back to the country (2003 was the last when Glen’s father died). But it’s a happy moment this time, a family reunion to surprise Glen’s ma on her 80th birthday this coming week (I’m sure her mom will not be able to read this blog, so I’m not spoiling the fun).
There was also reminiscing of the good old high school days – Glen, Baby and Alot's being baton-twirling majorettes or members of the dbc (drum & bugle corps), the famous native delicacies of Vinzons (Indan, sabi ni Ebo) – angko, hinalo, and masapodrida, and Glen’s account of the Mampurog “incident” when she, Marybeth and Susan tried to cross the river. That made us all roll in stitches. Ask Marybeth and Susan, why.
There was also some discussion of the oil crisis and its impact on the currency and on Canada’s economy, particularly the car industry; a general description of the public school system in Canada, and of course, napag-usapan iyong mga absent – like Marynat’s transformation from the silent and serious student to a new Marynat, the government accountant who’s happily married with two pairs of twins plus another child, makwento, at mahilig mag-lipstick even in public, as well as Lina’s pencil-perfect eyebrows which must take her hours to draw and must be the reason for her being perennially late. Nakaligtas si Ed, Rudy and Rori.
As expected in the Dads-Kamayan-Saisaki chain of restaurants, a group of musikeros serenaded us. But if during the despedida for Beth and Willy, Baby and Dra Yoly just kept on requesting Beatles’ songs, the group went not just one step, but several steps beyond that. Glen wanted to dance and so she did… with Baby, and then with Alot. They did the bye-bye and the cha-cha (oh no!, DA Gloria would be very happy!). Without the music though, by just watching their hand and body movements, one would not be certain if they’re practicing wrestling or boxing. Bert wanted me to put the caption – “The Inmates” when I post the pictures and the video. Remember the inmates of the Cebu provincial jail who became famous for their dance video uploaded in the You Tube? Matinding mang-alaska itong si Bert. Well, watch the DPS Class 67 version in the You Tube.
Glen is suggesting a July schedule for our 43rd Homecoming in 2010. What do you think classmates? Please give us your feedback. By that time, the constitutionally mandated Phil. presidential elections would have been over and we will know if Gloria has stepped down and whether we have a new President, or if she has declared martial law and has hang on to her position. Masaya ito!
By the way, Rey Rafer must have left for Canada yesterday afternoon (Saturday). He no longer contacted us when he came to Manila on Aug 14. Alot and I were able to talk with him, separately, when he was having dinner with the Daet group. Yoly contacted us and passed the phone to Rey.
For Men (Abot's) info, Araceli Banzon now resides in Canada and Glen and Robert get to see her quite often.
Lastly, Tess related the news that Sis. Terry (Azanes) has been diagnosed to have Stage 2 breast cancer and has already undergone surgery. We should schedule a visit to her soon.
Bert who is a more engaging story-teller, can surely add more to this account of the get together. In the meantime, enjoy the pictures and the video.