When I was around 8 to 10 years old, in our small place called "looban", we always have this frequent visitor. She was fair-skinned, almost as flawless as a commercial model, except that she has this very distinguishing birthmark at the back of her arm, the size of a computer mouse. All the children inside "looban" exhibits a ton of excitement, everytime she visits us. We hardly care about her age, we only care about the belief that her square-face denotes power and authority over us. Her name was Tita Fe and she's a storyteller. A fine one.
Every Sunday at 2pm, all kids gather in the narrow pathway towards "looban". During this time, this particular place becomes her battleground and the kids become her observant soldiers. Tita Fe was always ready to wage war against ennui. Her only weapon was her mind and her only shield was her story book but she has this wonderful talent of bringing us into magical worlds and fantastic kingdoms.
Tita Fe left a lighted candle inside of me, and I must admit until now that candle, though worn and tattered is still aflame. The small voices inside of me kept telling me to share the burning passion of storytelling. Like what Tita Fe have done for us.
Last weekend, I attended a two-day workshop. All about storytelling. I wanted to be on the giving end, this time. If before, my audience were merely the shadows and souls in our house, now, I thought it would be better to share my candle. Tita Fe for sure would agree to that.
The workshop rekindled my flame. I learned new techniques, gathered new methods, listened to new stories and of course gained new friends. It made me look at life at a new perspective. It gave me power. I can bring life to a water drop, I can give color to a dead chair or perhaps grant wings to tortoises... undoubtedly there is still no boundaries for human imagination.
This reminds me of the film Bedtime Stories. As Adam Sandler would tell his story as based on what he wanted to happen to his life, the kids would develop their own story thereby changing every story ending. Kids may be innocent but their imagination is bigger than you can ever imagine.
I don't claim that I am a good storyteller or I am better than one, perhaps the smile of my kids after each and every story I told them would be more than enough to let me know than I can be one. Like Tita Fe.
I am planning to have my very first storytelling session in one of the public libraries in Metro Manila. If ever you recognized me, feel free to call me Kuya Edong.
Handa na ba kayo mga bata?
tinuldukan ni Edong nung 5:45 PM
On Saturday, January 17, my youngest sister-in-law, Gina will be tying the knot with her long-time boyfriend Bjorn. This early, my family were too much agog with the event, considering that my two daughters Sam and Nicole will be part of the bridal entourage. Sam would be the bridesmaid and Nicole will take part as one of the flower girls. Although me and my wife would be on the sideline, we were also required to dress appropriately because of the photo-ops. :)
I was tasked to do the difficult part of making the Audio-Visual presentation of the couple to be played during the banquet. They were partly vigilant over their budget so they took the combo meal instead of the eat-all-you-can offer. That alone would cost them a hefty P12,000 if done by professionals, compared to my craft which was of course worth a handshake. This is my first time to do this so as early as now, they were already crossing their fingers and toes and eyes and arms...
I do not assure the highest of quality but I always see to it that I put my heart on each and every craft that I make (eventhough it's a wedding AVP... waaahhhh!!!!). Or maybe not, perhaps my professional title can speak by itself - Quality Assurance (feeling) Manager, hahaha.
Well to make it different from others, I put the personal artistic touch of Edong. The exquisitely defined unique character of my works as compared to none (BWAHAHA!). I wanted to upload it here but I will be preempting the excitement of their visitors (BWAHAHA more).
Last weekend, I finally fixed the home-theater sound set-up on our little living room. I was eager to watch Transformer but the right of suffrage prevented me from doing so. With the vote 3 to 1, I was a hapless victim of freedom and before I raise my electoral protest, Hairspray was already playing on our DVD.
It was my first time to watch that movie and before I knew it, Corny Collins was creeping inside of me. The songs were upbeat and very hard to resist. I always find myself dancing with my kids. One song that captured the 'hopeless romantic' in me was the 'You're Timeless To Me' duet of the main character's parents played by John Travolta and Christopher Walken.
Anyway, I will be doing not one but two AVPs for Bjorn and Gina. The first one would be the story of the couple - childhood, high school, puppy love ek ek. The second one was during the wedding pictures. After the wedding ceremony at the church, I will be sitting on one corner of the reception area, busy doing my craft. I will be editing pictures and videos on site and I will also be judged on site.
Inspired by the song from Hairspray, I will be incorporating a poem on the second AVP that I will be doing. Allow me to recite it.
You're Timeless to Me
today is the beginning of our married life
I, being the husband and you as my wife
we will face tomorrow full of hopes and dreams
together as one, no matter what it seems.
i have made a vow to you in front of everybody
a vow that i will hold on to, despite life's difficulty
at times i may weaken and may seem to falter
but my vow to you will be stronger than ever
your charming smile today, i never fail to see
your elegant beauty will be stuck in my memory
years may pass but i will always remember
that today is the start ... of our lasting forever
things may change, my dimples might disappear
but my vow to God is to love you as my dear
we will grow old, because of time, as you can see
but no matter what it seems, you're timeless to me...
I know sometimes I'm so corny, but most of the time it's ok to smile deep inside.
tinuldukan ni Edong nung 7:09 AM
Financial analysts have predicted that for the first quarter of the year 2009, the global recession will most likely affect Japan and China industries. This has developed a big concern over me during the last long holiday vacation. Why not? I am currently working in a Japanese firm with 90% of our customers belong on the Japanese electronics and automotive industries.
The first working day of the year brought whirlwind into my department. The company decided to cut the number of our manpower and my team was thrown into the path of the storm. Until now I am still gathering the torn pieces of my once colossal team. I have invested much on my personnel and trusted them with the brotherly-trust. In many times I have depended on them to bail me through management meetings. For what I am right now, I owe to them. They never left me empty-handed ever. It is just sad that I have to give up good and reliable operators. I have tried to save quite a few but the pelothon of operators just slipped through my hands. I just thought, it is not my call.
Tomorrow is the feast of the Black Nazarene of Quiapo. Being a Friday and having a cool atmosphere, it will definitely be huge. Prayers will be stronger on Friday than any other day in Quiapo, not to mention also the traffic. As part of the annual ritual, I am again surrendering myself to the feast. Hopefully, my last year's experience would not happen again to me or to anyone else. Luneta would be safer, others have thought.
This year is my 8th year of 'Panata'. I average around 5 rope-carry in the whole ceremony every year. In every carry of the rope, I am reciting a short prayer. I made this prayer on my 2nd year and until now, it never fails me ever.
"Lord, bless me with strength so as to protect myself but not exceedingly so as not to hurt others."
My operators will definitely be part of the prayers during my rope-carry. This I thought is all that I can offer to them. With the millions of prayers being recited tomorrow, I know mine will be heard as always. Because I know that as my body endure the pain of the procession, the greater the answer will be. It never fails ever.
Viva Nuestra Padre Jesus Nazareno!