"Feelings women rarely share"
I found this book in my grandmother's house in Banga. What might be these feelings she's hesitating to tell us?
Lola, Nanay's mother, is 80-plus but still has good memory. She recounts stories of childhood, family, and romance when we drop by. She relates these stories in Kinaray-a, which is similar to Hiligaynon but the vowels are more constricted and the intonation less sonorous. She complains that she falls asleep after TV Patrol, only to wake up at 1 AM, then unable to sleep afterwards. We assure her that's normal for people her age.
From her room, one can see the basketball court, formerly the "dryer" where palay and mais were sun-dried after the harvest. The bathroom beside her room has been renovated to make it easier for her. Her room smells of old furniture, its walls decorated with old calendars she doesn't want to take down. These remind me of my childhood, when my brothers and I came over during summers.
She used to have a sari-sari store to pass time (her lot was a prime spot for potential buyers)—this tindahan we ransacked to our hearts' content. She eventually closed it down after declaring what could be considered bankruptcy, thanks to her apos.
Our cousins hadn't been born yet, so we had the ancestral Banga house all to ourselves, then with its Beta-max and VHS players, our aunts and uncles doting on us like their own. These days, my parents come over to visit her at least once weekly. It's a quiet home that makes me sleepy all the time.