Tuesday, May 13, 2008

My daughter and my boys

My daughter was kidnapped (he, he, he) by my mother and my sister and was brought to Baguio City to spend her summer vacation. Since my wife work and I am busy with church work, I was only too willing to let her be kidnapped because it meant freedom and mobility for me. (I try to keep busy because I find it relaxing to be busy. Being idle and doing nothing makes me think of crazy ideas, outlandish theories and theologies that I sometimes think I am beginning to lose my sanity and of course the danger of depression is greater when one is idle-- yeah, an idle hand and an idle mind are the devil’s playground.)

My daughter’s kidnapping lasted for five days and a month. I didn’t notice it but I was really being selfish already because I was not being sensitive to my wife’s…ahhhh…what do they call this…err maternal...in short my wife missed my daughter. She missed my daughter and every time she asked me when I would be fetching her from Baguio I always answered, “Let her decide.” My sister is relatively well off in Baguio (geographically and climatically speaking) than us here in Cainta plus the fact that my daughter had two cousins to play with there, the chances that she would be missing the oppressive summer heat of Cainta and us and that she would be going home earlier than my wife expected it to be was nil. I did miss my daughter too, but she’s with my mother and sisters so I felt secure knowing she’s with my family. But if she was with my in-laws in Quezon Province alone with my wife’s family, I would have felt the same way my wife did.

Anyway I know that my wife was already nearing depression when I passed by the sari-sari store (or mini grocery) where she worked with three boys riding on my motorcycle. These boys were the toughies in our church’s area. They are the bullies who beat children for no reason. They used to attend our church but since their bullying resulted in the drop of attendance in our Sunday School and junior worship, we were forced to ban them from the church.

But VBS (Vacation Bible School) came and they, as usual, were there to make life difficult for the other children and for the teachers. Berating them only resulted in provoking them and when nothing else worked, I grabbed them and told them to ride with me. I run errands for the VBS and I took them with me on my bike on these errands. I isolated them from the class and this resulted in “bonding moments” with them. In one of my errands I took them to a police station and showed them where delinquents are imprisoned. Naturally my kumpare (my daughter’s godfather), the policeman, played along and these kids behaved, sadly only briefly, during VBS. But at least they knew that I had a policeman friend and that is enough for them to look up to me as a sort of a toughie too, or a “benevolent siga.”

When I passed by the sari-sari store (or mini grocery) where my wife worked, she saw the boys, she told me, “How can you take care of other boys when you should be worried about your daughter” I smiled and told her, “Don’t worry she’s fine!” But I know that she’s missing her daughter and sooner or later I would have to fetch my daughter from Baguio.

A few days later, my wife cried the whole night and it was then that I decided to fetch my daughter. I borrowed money from a neighbor and after our church worship and meetings; I immediately and hurriedly went to Baguio.

Now my daughter is with us and so is her cousin. Now what's driving me crazy is she, being an only child, is now jealous of her cousin. My gulay, I am having headaches.

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