Sunday morning going to town
"Hay Kailangan" is a Zambal Botolan lullaby from Zambales. It describes in a child’s simple language, "what is needed" (Hay Kailangan) by a family. It paints an idyllic picture of a rural home built by Father, surrounded by a garden of flowering plants and vegetables, and bounded by a bamboo fence. Everything seems captured in the glow of the day’s end. Father comes home from work in the fields, while the singer and older brother return from school. Waiting to greet them at the door is Mother carrying little brother. Certainly a rosy image for a baby to dream about.
Zambales, the province from which this lullaby comes, is the elongated strip of rugged land lying on Luzon’s western seaboard. The place was originally inhabited by a tribe called Sambals, whose name was derived from the Tagalog word, Samba, meaning worship. The three ethnolinguistic groups are the Tagalog, the Ilocano and the Sambal, which is further divided into Sambal-Botolan, Sambal Iba (also known as Sambal-Tina) and Sambal-Ita. This lullaby comes from Sambal-Botolan group.
Loob Bunga, Poonbato in Botolan, is the specific source of "Hay Kailangan". It is now a resettlement area which was created by the government for residents displaced by the 1991 Mount Pinatubo eruption.
The family system is very strong among the Botoleños – with the child being the center of interest and attention of the family. It is the duty of the husband to earn a living and provide for the family’s needs. Meanwhile, it is the duty of the wife to make a good home and care for the children. She also holds the purse and does the family budgeting. Parenting and disciplining the children, however, are the responsibilities of both husband and wife.
The MITATAANAK, or family, puts great emphasis on the parent-child relationship. At a very early age, the Zambal boy runs errands for the family and watches the carabaos and helps in the farmworks. He also does minor household chores like gathering firewood, fetching water, and feeding the pigs and chickens. As he grows older, he takes over most of the father’s work in hunting, fishing and food gathering.
The little Sambal girl learns domestic chores – gathering edible food and fish in the river, cooking, cleaning the house, washing and ironing the clothes. She also helps in caring for younger siblings and tending the vegetables and ornamental plants in the garden. However, boys and girls alike help the planting and harvesting season in the field.
"Hay Kailangan" clearly brings to life this simple rural scene. Its direct and vivid lyrics, while speaking of ordinary things, capture that moment of homecoming that illustrates the warmth and closeness of the family.
Source: Himig: a collection of Philippine Folk Songs By Evelyn Cabanban
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