It has been so long since the last time I stepped outside just to feel the sun on my face. This was never part of the itinerary of the day. The plan was, just to be as lazy as usual, glue the control in my left hand and watch the world in a tube on my wall. Thinking of it now, catching myself a realization, I used to love being out here, to be in the same neighborhood, living as a kid, without any pretensions, to just wander aimlessly without any plans and direction, to just contribute to the traffic of random movements.
Lately I have never been good in doing things continuously. And in the way things are going, I think I need to put up with that fact. Reassessing, my principle now is of a grown up’s. Now, I would always say that, the end of something is also a start of a beginning. And over the years I have conditioned myself to believe that my life is a series of changing cycles that one has to catch up with, every time it restarts. I guess that’s how things really are, but then, at times I still ask myself otherwise.
I remember as a child, I was fond of merry go rounds, and what I would always do was lean back, sticking my tongue out of my mouth and taste the sweetness of the wind. Silly may it sound, but there was something about the air when you go fast that I really liked.
We were in 1st grade when my Dad taught me and my twin brother how to ride a bike.
We would go biking around the neighborhood, buying pandesal every Saturday and Sunday mornings, passing by the same houses and never got tired of it. We used to race with the bees at the park. Sundays were even better with our Mom’s turbo-roasted chicken and for me; it just got sweeter and sweeter every week. Our family turbo roaster retired last year.
During afternoons, when the Duhats and the Alatiris are ripe enough, we would climb the trees to feast. And as far as we were concerned, the Duhats and the Alatiris were all we ever needed to survive. We steal Kamias from our neighbor’s for spice, and most of the times caught but it did not matter, we were just kids anyway.
Even in our early years, we had our way to out play the grown up romantics. Instead of buying a dozen of roses, what we would do was make bubbles out of Gumamela. Pounding the slimy juices out of the leaves and petals, plus ground detergent, we pretend to be the pilots of zeppelin bubbles with rainbow striped glare that would wow every girl in our street. And when it rains, instead of staying indoors, with our air cool sandos, we would peel off blank pages from the back of our school notebooks, and instantly, we become captains of our own paper boats; our fleet sailed in the rain swollen gutters.
One morning, my son and I took a walk out of our front gate and saw the same gutter where I used to play growing up. But now everything looked different. We then paid a visit to where the Alatiris tree and the Gumamela plant used to stand, but they were both gone. I told him of our stories and adventures with those trees, of how we caught the biggest spiders on the branches and lizard eggs laid in between the hollowed blocks of the wall behind them. Dylan was all ears.
Luckily the Duhat tree was still there but it no longer bear fruits. Maybe someday it will again, maybe when kids start to play and climb trees again. It saddened me for a while but felt thankful right after. I realized that they will always be a part of what was, a story of the past and of the kids who played and out grown the life.
And I guess this was what listening to all of those plastic records was all about. It was never just to read the leaflets or just to sing along. It was about something else. As I write these words before hitting lazy mode again, before resting my aging legs to rest, I would try again to relish these collisions with the kid in me, may it be solicited or not, to just crash and see what is carefree. Hits and misses.