| When planting
banana plants always spread your fingers to scoop the dirt from the hole
so bananas will spread out sa buwig. And never look up to the plants while
planting because the puno will be bang-taas ay mahirap anihin. We also
learned to make good ulam - that is sinigang out of one small can of sardines
with sahog of all vegetables you can find around the kubo.
Everytime we took a
rest from planting or mending fences he would say, "Junior, Ene habang
kayo ay nagpa-pahi-pahinga ay hawanan ninyo ang mga puno ng mangga." (While
resting weed-out the mango tree). What a break!
Lolo was proud
of his pananim sa Lanang. He always showcased his plants. Everytime he
felt the Lanang itch he will tell Lola, "Hoy Masang (Lola Tanda) pakaon
mo na nga mga apo mo at magpipiknik sa Lanang." Weekends were Lanang time
for us. Armed with "itak" very proud to have our own, straw hat, maluto
of matamis na bao, off we lakar for miles and miles.
I always complained,
"Masakit na po paa ko Lolo." His reply? "Malapit na tayo, maglibang ka
sa mga ibon sa raan, mga bulaklak sa bakuran at hindi mo mapapansin ang
sakit ng paa mo." His motivation worked! Pero tagaktak naman ang pawis
ko. Kuya was cool - lakar ng lakar, tabas rini, tabas raon at kayas ng
sanga na may kasabay pang susot (whistling) maski na kaliwete ang musik
(oops! Sorry Kuya).
ay maghahawan (clearing) muna ng mga bagin around banana plants, dalanghita,
atbp. Then mamimitas na ng sinegguelas - isang pitas, dalawang kain! One
time D.E. almost burned down the kubo and the whole of Lanang. He was not
palo. Oh boy did he get mura all the way home. Here is the story.
It was a hot summer
and DE threw the baga (embers) outside the kubo. It landed on some dry
kugon and started a flash. The fire gapang very fast around the kubo burning
small trees, grass, old and dried logs, etc. With Lolo's katiwala, Totoy
Sto. Domingo, the fire was put under control at sunset. The small bal-on
helped a lot. If I am not mistaken that bal-on was dug by Tio Nick and
Tato, another cousin whose property is adjacent to Lanang.
Many years later
Lolo told me, "Alam mo ba Ene nang sunugin mo and Lanang (not intentional)
ay nakabuti sa isang bagay - nagsilbing fertilizer ang mga abo ng mga puno
at damo. Luminis pati ang mga sukal."
was another chore. Lolo always inspected our bigkis. It should be tight
and the firewood cut in the same length. He was a perfectionist. You either
do it right (his way), or not do it at all.
Raymond and I balik-SM. He heard the word Lanang and asked what it was.
A brief pasyal to Lanang impressed him. "You mean to say my great grandfather
owned this whole mountain?" Yes, Raymond, Lanang was Lolo Tanda's legacy
to the members of the San Miguel clan.
Lanang. One special
place for us. Let us keep the Lanang Spirit burning (Ooops aray, hindi
na po!) - the San Miguel way.