The good old days…

Sitting on a couch with Engelbert Humperdinck’s music being played on the radio has for a while, transported me back to those good old days of childhood. Music of such genre, or the so called oldies but goodies was Papa’s favorite. I used to hear them every Sunday and I, too, had grown fond of it.

I have a lot of good memories from such smooth ballad type of music, and most of them, happened on Sundays. Well, perhaps, as for most people Sunday is family day, a time apt for relaxation, where parents have no work to attend to and children are just idling under the sun. It seems that in this specific day, things are in slow motion, giving ample time for people to make memories together or simply reminisce about the former times.

There was this specific time back then, when the audio cassette player was the fad. We have one at our house where Papa used to play Engelbert Humperdinck’s songs like: A man without love, There goes my everything, The way it used to be and several others. These are the songs that, even up to now, fill me with nostalgia. I remember that we used to bring that musical instrument during our Sunday picnic at Tamahuyan.

TAMAHUYAN

TAMAHUYAN- photo grabbed from the web.                                           

Tamahuyan is my family’s escape, our comfort place. It is a beautiful islet having a long stretch gravelly aisle that can be reached through a small banca or motorboat, and is situated few kilometers from the port near our house. Often, we pay a visit to a family friend who owns the place and spend time chatting over their warm company, while enjoying good music, eating luscious seafood and appreciating the beauty of the sea while it’s free.

It has been a family practice every Sunday to visit the two old fellows who live there. Lolo July and Lola Imay as we fondly called them has found solace living away from the hustle and bustle of our town. Lolo July was of Spanish descent. He has this seemingly strict stance that, for a short while, made me feel quite uneasy towards him. However, that impression was quickly replaced by admiration because of his kindness. Lola Imay has been the ever gentle and soft spoken woman who has a way with words. Her supple voice when she speaks is still carved in my thoughts. I could still remember her enchanting stories about the fairies, the elves and other mythical creatures which I believe to be true which, from the time immemorial, has inhabited Tamahuyan.

These two affable beings together with my grandparents had formed a cohesive bond which could be considered as a connection similar to a family. Yes, each of us was treated like their own family. They even found pleasure of cooking us their renowned dish called “pinangat” (fish vinegar stew) cooked in a traditional clay pot, which according to them, is only being served for special visitors. For so many Sundays that we used to huddle together at their place I can say we’ve had the best of them. But things, of course, have an end. When sickness got the better of Lolo July and the need to take him to the city for medical care became so urgent, the Sunday picnic took a halt.

When Lolo July finally joined the Creator and Lola Imay moved under the care of her children in the city, Tamahuyan was left abandoned. Gone are those Sundays of storytelling and wonderful bonding. But like the music we used to hear which brings memories back, Tamahuyan too, has carved a reverberating impression of happiness that always remind me of the beautiful people who once lived there.

Sitting on a couch with Engelbert Humperdinck’s songs still being played on the radio, I realize that music, as Stevie Wonder put it, “is what gives us memories. And the longer a song has existed in our lives, the more memories we have of it.”

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About john tugano

A twenty-something lad, who wishes to unravel more of society's unfathomable ironies. View all posts by john tugano

5 responses to “The good old days…

  • Island Traveler

    A beautiful, nostalgic story that I can so relate. Music indeed brings us back to memorable, happy childhood memories that warms our heart and brings home close whenever we remember them. I too grew up in a place similar to yours. I remember riding the banca in the rural fish pond area and building relationships with local folks who are very hospitable and treated us like family. I wish I can share the same to my son but he is growing in a country so opposite to what I used to know. Perhaps next Philippines visit, I will take him to places I used to journey as a kid. Thanks for sharing this. God bless.

    Like

  • Nelszy

    What a wonderful memories from the past, indeed. I have learned something to be a parent from your story, thanks for sharing.

    Like

  • Sony Fugaban

    Reminisching and songs…just the kind of my typical relaxation. The story though is really melancholic; I can’t help but miss my parents who love Engelbert Humperdinck’s songs. My father adores him; in fact, he only sings his songs in videoke.

    I miss reading the simple yet so deep articles of yours, bro. You truly are living with what your blog’s name which says, “A Life That Leaves a Mark!” It’s the simple things that give us that subtlety needed to realize, life is should actually be about simplicity.

    Your articles are reminders for us who have stuck in a citified life.

    Like

  • pinoytransplant

    A heart warming story. Just want to let you know that you have a gift of transporting your readers to the place or time you want to take them to. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

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