Friday, September 10

Father, Figure

My father loves stories. He likes them fantastic and impossible. He shares our addiction to Buffy, Angel and Star Trek; he gets as involved as we do when it comes to defending our favorite TV shows to non-fans, mostly relatives who want to change channels when our shows come on, which usually ends bloody. He also reads Dungeon and Dragons, has 4 sets of the Lord of the Rings series (including the original hardbound releases) from The Hobbit to The Silmarillion, is a big fan of Alvin the Apprentice (Seventh Son of the Seventh Son), Isaac Asimov and Ursula LeGuin, has finished all the available Harry Potter books and is currently reading Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere.

My father loves telling stories. He is a story teller. When we were small, he would tell us his own versions of Bambi, the Flinstones, the King Crab. But his best and most exciting would be the World War II stories.

When the Japanese invaded the country in 1942, his family had to hide in the mountains of La Union. His mother washed the clothes of the American soldiers to make a living and his father assembled and cleaned rifles and bayonets. He was the fifth of eight children, the third youngest. He would hide under bridges, cover his body, face, hands with mud and watched the Japanese kill Filipino children, stabbing the children with bayonets. He would smoke filter-less cigarettes afterwards with his brothers. He lost 2 sisters and a brother to the war. He was 7 years old.

When he turned 17, he decided to join the Philippine Navy, along with his 2 older brothers. But he was never sure if he ever killed anyone in any of his postings because there was always too many soldiers shooting, firing, dying.

He met my mother on a train ride back to Manila. He was 27, my mother was 24. He took the seat of my mom's friend and refused to budge. Then they exchanged numbers.

After I was born, my mom got a scholarship at the University of Wales. So my father resigned from his naval post and took care of my sister and I, full time, for 3 years.

My father, Eddie, 67, would like to believe that he would live forever. I really wish he would.

1 comment:

starshuffler said...

I have only read the first three books of Alvin the Apprentice! Nakakabitin! I hope Ate Faye finds the fourth book.

I hope your dad is okay. <:-i