Last November 30, 2012 I visited my hometown in Bicol. I travel by night because it’s comfortable and less traffic than day traveling. I arrived at 5a.m. in Gallego tricycle terminal. Most people there are staring at me, I’ve recognized some faces I but forgot their names. It is really hard for me to remember names. They know me but I don’t know them because it’s been a year since my last visit there. While travelling I was enjoying the cool and clean morning breeze. My arms are freezing even I am wearing jacket. In every barangay that we’ve passed by people are staring like I am a convicted criminal. Then I realized that I have fair skin and it makes me look like a balikbayan. My hometown really changed a lot, the roads were cemented already unlike my last visit it was really rough road. I arrived home at 7a.m. I saw our dogs waiving their tails and they came running then jump at me, they also licked my feet that makes me laugh and I chase them back to the house. They still recognized me even I’m not there for almost a year. At dinner I requested that we grilled the eggplant I saw in the backyard and I put fresh coconut milk, salt and crushed pepper on it. It tasted really good I missed those kind of food that I used to eat when I was a teenager. Like a typical provincial life we slept at 8p.m. and woke up at 4a.m. because my father is working in the farm, he is walking almost 1 hour to what we called linang or the farm. So he needs to wake up early. While I was cleaning at the kitchen and my sisters are watching TV, the chickens are making unusual noise. I was wondering what it is because I feed them already so I go outside the house and looked at trees where they were staring at something. I can’t see it clearly, so I called my younger sister to bring me my eyeglasses. And when I saw it was a hawk owl, I called my mother to come outside. I asked her why there is an endangered species of bird there. She told me that the forests are now depriving because of kaingin and cutting trees to make coal. And last October some people in the mountain catch 3 wild boars at bating (it is use to catch wild pig and dear). She told me also that our neighbor catch wild cat or what we call musang it looks like a little fox. My father catches at the farm a wild chicken our folks call it labuyo with chicks while he was pasturing our cows and carabaoes, and he is taking care of it he said that if he let it go some people might cook it. It is a tiny chicken like Chinese chicken. I don’t have camera when I visited the farm so I am not able to take picture of it.
The natural habitats of wild animals are now disturbed so it makes the animals to panic. I feel pity for those animals it is sad to say that the future generation won’t experience to see the beautiful forest that I love to hike. Before, during my high school days I love to climb in the mountain, and I get a lot of different wild fruits like guava, kurumbot, balig-ang (wild duhat), malawmaw (tiny wild grapes) and the leaves of it used for inasiman a typical Bicol dish, I also get wild orchids like waling-waling, pasdak. And now because our forest is destroyed I will not experience it again but it is all in my memories. And I am glad that my mother was taking care of my orchids and pasdak that now in our antique jar. My mother told me that they are now also experiencing flash flood. And the river where I used to swim when I was a girl is now dying and they are getting their drinking water at Maniknik. It is a mountain where they can only get the fresh and clean spring water. Because the population in Mansalaya is getting big, I am afraid that when I come back to visit there again it will be polluted place like here in Manila. And I can’t swim on a clean river again. People are now careless and don’t care about the environment that gives them what they need. Also our government is not taking any actions to solve that problem. So I promise to myself that if I graduated and get much money I will make a reforestation project on our timber land.
Our quilbay river spill way, it is called quilbay or killbay because every year tourist people are drowned here.
my orchids at home
our antique jar with my pasdak 🙂