The Shoes He Will Be Wearing

It was the middle of summer. The kind of days when the gust of wind produces burn on your skin creating tan lines on your back that testifies your midsummer’s goings-on. And these are the times of the year that I have to stay with Tatay and Nanay. That is how we, their apos, call them. I have to endure an exhilarating seven-hour travel time to be with them. But to understand how long a dreary, mind-numbing seven hours of sitting in a public bus is, you have to be familiar with the law of relativity. Calculating that using Einstein’s way ~that seven hours is equivalent to my three days worth of time.

Like any other story, I was able to bear the boredom of the seven-hour trip. I arrived just in time before sunset. Our house is located wherein you will see the setting sun in between mountains. And every day, some minutes before night awakens, when I look out the window, I observed that each sunset of every summer is differently crafted by the universe. And every drama ofeach sunset I dreamt of seeing is right in front of me.

First Segue:

Sunset reminds me of the coming death of life.

This thought keeps hunting me. Because every time I see a sunset, there is an invisible being that whimpers in my ear, reminding me, that every day there ‘is’ this one sun that has to be buried. This thought–it feels like there is a masked gunman shooting you at point blank range with the idea of: SOONER OR LATER, YOU WILL DIE.

Another Segue:  

It has always been summer that I get the chance to be with Tatay and Nanay. That’s the only time of the year when all them cousins, coming from different region and countries, reunite and bond and visit the beaches of La Union. This is the time of the year when I become darker–and soon realize that I love slash hate myself because I spent another summer in the province.

Too much for segues. Let us stick with the story XD

I bid my respect to gramps. Went straight to one of the rooms and unpacked my bags. Then and there, I saw a pair of brown shoes. It’s Tatay’s I assume.

I jokingly said that I want the shoes. Tatay said that I can’t have those. I reiterated that I really want them. Tatay didn’t answer. This gives me the urge to want the shoes more although it’s not my type and I know that I won’t wear it if I go back to the city. I just want the shoes because I want to tease Tatay and give him one more reason why he needs to drink his hypertension medicine. Just for fun and, at the same time, to grasp the opportunity of making special memories with Tatay.

The pestering goes on for days. I would wear the shoes and when Tatay saw me putting on them, he’ll get mad and would remind me in an irritated tone that I can’t have them. This continued until summer was over. I then had to return back to the city.

The next summer, we celebrated the grand reunion. My uncles and aunties together with my parents wanted to have this before it’s too late. Tatay and Nanay are not getting any younger. That same summer, I saw the shoes again. It was still new and barely used. I didn’t care at all, because at that moment, I am looking at the sunset. It was lovely and nostalgic at the same time. Yes, at the same time.

That was the last summer.

Because months later, a different reunion is to be commemorated. My family is to celebrate a bittersweet gathering ~Tatay’s funeral. My uncle called each one of the apo and asked one thing: “Is there a will or a wish that Tatay told you before his passing?” This is one of the hardest questions that have been asked to me not because I do not know the answer but because it only means one thing. Tatay is already gone. My cousin told my Uncle that Tatay wants to wear the brown shoes when he died.

The same brown shoes that I am pestering Tatay a year ago. Now it makes sense. That shoe was given to him by my uncle. And up until the last moment, Tatay wanted to wear the things that were given to him by his loved ones. I knew it, Tatay wants to bring with him in the afterlife his happy memories. Memories of which will map his way to the heavens.

I still think of sunset as a coming death of man, and Tatay had a stunning sunset of his life. But the thought of deaths and sunsets no longer creeps me out. I am going to die, I know, but I will collect as many happy memories I could collect.

And I will watch as many sunsets I could watch..

Advertisements

223 thoughts on “The Shoes He Will Be Wearing

          1. Haha. Eto, naka cellphone kase ak0. Aw. Sige, ayusin k0 ito mamaya pag nasa pc na ak0. Hehe! Sablay t0ng selpawn k0 minsan. Aw! Binibisita k0 dito yung website m0 Vajarl at kay Father Fiel, kaso di ak0 maka c0mment sa site ny0 pg ph0ne ang gamit! Hehe.

            Like

    1. pasabit sa base ax.. ganda naman ng sinabi mo na.. I am going to die, I know, but I will collect as many happy memories I could collect….

      kaya habang bata ka pa pakabait ka.. hehehe

      Like

  1. teka, may ganitong version ang chicken soup for the soul Ax. about a girl naman na may nagpapadala sa kanya ng love letter tuwing valentine’s day…di niya alam kung sino ang sender…

    it went on and on, then ang last statement niya is that noong namatay ang nanay niya, hindi na rin siya nakakatanggap ng valentine’s card…

    labkodispost ax. pang-book na naman.

    Like

    1. Nabasa k0 rin yan sa chicken s0up f0r the s0ul. Oo, tuwing valentines day, may flowers siyang natatanggap.. Sadly, she no l0nger receives flowers noong namatay yung mama nya. Nakakalungk0t.

      Like

    2. i agree. ganda ng pagkacraft. i love the emotional trnasitions. at kung sunset ang hinahanap mo, aba pumunta ka dito samin sa bataan – the best!

      Like

    1. Nasabi sa akin ni Hamster na one year lng ang balak niya sa pagblo-blog. Aw. Di ko expected na ie-enable nya ang ‘protected’ settings. Baka ibalik nya din y0n, Father. Hehe.

      Like

  2. Pa 2nd beys Ax.

    Ang ganda Ax nitong kuwento mo…may kurot.

    —“I am going to die, I know, but I will collect as many happy memories I could collect.”

    Amen.

    Like

  3. La Union? Shux baka kamag anak mo si Dracula. Haha. Magtatago na nga ako. Lol.

    Nagkalat pala ang mga kamag anakan mo all over the country. Para pala kayong ipis. Joke. 😛 Hindi ko kase alam ang sasabihin ko pag tungkol sa kamatayan na. Pero tanong ko lang, totoong story ba to? Or part ng book mo ata?

    Now that I think about it, I never really spent time tryong to watch the sun set. I think I have had a couple of chances to do so, I guess I was too busy dealing with people when the scenery should’ve been enough to keep me preoccupied.

    For what it’s worth, I believe in the afterlife. I know my religious views can get extreme but I really do. I just think it is nice to think that we have something to look forward to going to after we are finished with this one we have here.

    So let’s enjoy the sunsets as long as we are here. I know I should do that more often. 😀

    Like

    1. Vajarl, yep! Ilokano ako. Haha. Wag ka magtago, kase mahahanap kita. Yay.

      Kapag may namamatay, iba yung dating ng sunset sa akin. Probably, because that is how I view sunsets.

      Enjoy lang natin ang buhay, wag tayo magpa stressed! At yun na ang resolved ko! Hehe.

      Like

  4. Because of the shoes, you’ve made a wonderful story! Ganda! Galing! Naconnect connect mo ang sunset, ang summer, ang shoes, at ang death. Galing!

    Like

    1. Salamat Vim!

      I want to write about summer and my province and then, I realized I am writing about death and a pair of brown shoes!

      Sasabihin ko sa’yo yung good news kapag may good news. Hehe.

      Like

  5. aw. Lungkot. ayoko pa muna ng mga ganitong kwento. =(

    Tama, watch as many sunsets as you can. Yun lang naman ang magagawa natin talaga, ienjoy at gawing makabuluhan lahat.

    *hindi ko chinecheck ang site mo kasi for some reason ay palagi syang nabablock dito sa office. Isa ka daw virus. lol. Pero ewan ko, tinry ko kanina, okay naman.

    Like

  6. tama kutob ko na gagamitin ung ng lolo pagpanaw nya.
    dati kasi naalala ko ung lolo namen sa tuhod na humingi sa nanay ko ng relo.

    Like

    1. T’was two years ago nung namatay si Tatay. No worries, okay lang. May mga death wish talaga siyang sinabi kung ano yung susuotin niya. Ganon, gusto niya mamamatay na suot yung soldier uniform niya. Kase nagsilbi siya sa Pilipinas as a soldier. He went through war noong World War II. Gusto niya rin na nandun yung plate niya. Plate ba tawag dun? Yung apilyido tapos pini-pin? Hehe. Tapos, yung relo din na bigay ng Tita ko. Yung mga yon. Basta lahat ng bigay. May bag pa ngang sinama sa grave. Isasama na nga rin dapat ako, kaso sabi ko: unfair! Bakit isasama ako! Waah!

      Like

  7. kaya hanggang kaya pilitin magukol ng panahon sa mga mahal sa buhay.
    mahiwalay man pansamantala o pansamantagal ay nagawa mo ang obligasyon na laan para sa kanila.

    Like

      1. haha, natawa ako kay Vajarl.

        hindi ka na nagbabasa ng chicken soup for the soul kase leveling ka na J.Kul, yung mga binabasa mo eh mga nagpapabilis ng tibok ng puso mo tulad ng Bomba! Joke lang!

        Like

        1. Vajee, ako ay dating matinong kulisap, dahil lagi mong pinapakita ang kaartehan mo, madali kong nagagaya.

          Ikaw ang nagturo sa akin kung paano maglibog, maghaliparot, maglande.

          Like

  8. OT:
    Suplado na blog ni Jason Hamham.

    Siguro may ginagawa siyang transformation, parang si Jolina, nawala pagbalik isa na lang pilikmata na kulay red/orange na parang isang kilometro yata ang haba.

    Like

  9. uy…pakakataon mo nang makuha yung sapatos. sige na bago magising *kidlat*….hoy sabi ni jason sabihin ko raw yan

    btw, mukha kang na-inspire sa last blog ni jason at yung mga comments dun…

    Like

    1. true indeed.

      i rather watch the sunset and slumber in my sleep that i experienced such a wonder.. than wake up at morning and fear of another sunset in the coming night.

      Like

  10. Sinuot nga ni tatay? naalala ko lang ang pamahiin na hindi isinusuot ang sapatos sa yumao, sa tabi lang ng paa, dahil baka kung bumisita siya, may mga yabag na maririnig… tok. tok. tok. at least, mawe-welcome mo siya hehe

    Like

    1. Ay teka, ang alam ko suot, or I am not sure kung nilagay lang sa casket.. i reminiscing it.. ganun ba yun? hindi sinusuot?

      Sige, kapag may narinig akong naglalakad, eh, sisigaw na lang agad ako!

      Like

  11. nakakalungkot to ax…

    ikaw pilyo ka talaga. buti di mo nadungisan o nasira yung sapatos kundi lagot ka. isasama ka nya. hahah biro lang.

    the sunset..

    hanggang ngayon pag nakakakita ka ng sunset naaalala mo si tatay?

    huwag ng malungkot axo.

    magandang umaga!

    Like

    1. Ahm, not only Tatay. Kase when one of my Tito died, daddy ng pinsan ko, it was sunset at La Union nung binalita sa amin.

      Grabe, ibang iba yung sunset noong araw na yun. Ang pula pula. Parang ang daming dust particles. And then, the next bad news given to us, namatay nga yung isa sa mga Tito namin.

      Like

  12. hmmmmmmmmmmmm

    nalungkot ako bigla akso..
    kasi naisip ko one time
    darating din ang time na
    magpapaalam si lolo ko…

    i remember one last time nung namatay lolo ko, fatherside. di kami masyadong close. pero napahagulgol ako nung nakita ko si daddy biglang hinablot ang twalya tapos umiyak ng umiyak.

    yung lolo ko ngayon ang medyo close ko. nasa bahay kasi sya palagi. kahit medyo bingi na eh nakakatuwa pa din sya, lakas ng sense of humor.

    tama na.. ayaw ko na magkwento. kaw kasi e
    hahaha

    Like

    1. Aw. Bago namatay yung dalawang Lolo ko, we had a blast reunion. The year or months after, they passed away. Ayos lang, buti at nahabol yung mga reunions namin.

      Aw, sorry naman! Yay. Pero ayos lang.. Ganon talaga. It happens everyday.

      Like

  13. nakakalungkot naman ang post mo ax…naalala ko tuloy yung lolo ko bata pa ako when he passed away…

    ang naalala ko nman sa kanya yung tungkod nya…ayaw na ayaw nya malalayo yun at paglaruan namin…pag inagaw mo tyak mapapalo ka nya…Aw!!

    love this post.. 🙂

    Like

    1. Sa amin naman, pag ginabi ka ng uwi, nakow, papaluin ka talaga. Hello, eh mga kamag-anak lang naman ang pinupuntahan namin. Minsan natulog kami sa bahay ng pinsan ko, pero nagpaalam kami kaya ayos lang. One time, nag-inuman tapos di kami nagpaalam, ay nakow, paktay kaming lahat nung mga panahon na yun.

      Papauwiin daw ako ng Manila at lahat kaming magpipinsan papauwiin. Haha, nung time na yun gusto ko ng umuwi!.. kaso ayoko kase masaya kasama mga pinsan ko!

      Like

        1. hindi naman. dumating yung point na ayaw kong umuwi sa probinsya kahit pilitin ako ng buong angkan ko.

          kahit pilitin ako nila mama at daddy.

          that was the time, i was introduced to pride. wala ayoko lang umuwi dun. that is the time when i am too young and too stupid.

          and too reckless.

          and i wish i could collect all the memories i missed with all my cousins on that specific summertime.

          Like

  14. (i think) wearing the shoes means two things.

    one is about reliving the memories you had with the owner. even if you don’t wear it, so long as you see it once in a while, the memories come like a movie reel rewinding.

    second is a bit on its physicality. don’t you think wearing those shoes means wearying out too of the memories? wearing the shoes might change the effect of the memories on you,

    or probably, this is just the way I look at it

    *_*

    Like

    1. i remember the story of a child who was given a shirt by her crush.

      and the child says that the shirt does not look so great.. but he’ll wear it everyday because the giver is someone special.

      Like

      1. ano na ang nagyari sa blog ni jason? minulto na ng hamster nya. …yung mga tyanak na hamsters…matapos kainin ng nanay nila sila…

        Like

  15. ayan, nabasa ko na.. naalala ko tuloy ang lolo ko (father side) sa tarlac. wala na rin sya, five years ago pa. hindi naman kame close pero uhmm.. wala lang, hindi lang kame close.

    condolence sa family nyo… 😦

    Like

            1. Kaya pala nong saturday, kung anu-ano nangyari sa akin, nandyang katihin ang buo kong katawan, dumugo ilong ko, tumayo mga hair ko.

              Mangkukulam ba yong mga nagkita kita diyan sa birthday ni Kaye?

              Like

  16. dear ax,

    Nalungkot ako sa kwento mo. may kurot ika nga. na-iimagine ko tuloy yong brown na shoes kung ano meron dun? pero napaka realistic ng kwento mo, kasi lahat tayo mamamatay, lulubog na prang araw. pero bago pa man yon dumating eh we journey the path kung saan at ano ang gusto natin. maganda ang lesson ng kwento, catchy din ang sunset na emphasized mo sa kwento.

    maganda ang mga writing stints mo, walang duda. yun nga lamang naboboring ako sa font ng blog mo.

    sincerely yours,
    youknowmewho 😉

    Like

    1. kahit lumubog naman ang araw, kinabukasan may panibagong sinag pa rin. patuloy na iinog ang mundo.. maraming araw at buwan ang sasakop sa langit.

      ayos lang, basta maraming alaala na iiwan.

      OT: haha, i’ll try other font. kaso busy pa ako these days to experiment on whatnots. salamat sa advise.

      i remain,
      the funny precog alien

      Like

      1. hehe last week talagang nakakapagod.. punta kami sa isang elementary school para bigay ng mga gifts sa mga malnourish na mga bata taz last saturday night sa ospital naman.. nagpakain kami at nagpa kape.. hehe. kakapagod pero ibang klaseng pagod ang naramdaman namin.. may satisfaction. hehe..

        Like

          1. oo nga eh.. di ko na rin alam minsang kolektahin ang mga happy memories dahil sa sobrang dami… ung mga sobrang happy na lang ang iniipon ko kasi madaling isipin.. pero ang mga hindi ganun kasaya talagang hinahayaan ko na rin.. hehehe

            Like

  17. Is there a will or a wish that Tatay told you before his passing? This is one of the hardest questions that have been asked to me not because I do not know the answer.. but because it means only one thing. Tatay is already gone. >>> bigat nga isipin to. pero talagang dadaan yata talaga tayo diyan.

    Like

  18. hello po.. gud afternoon po.. pwed po ba akong mgplink sa site nyo po? kailangan lng po kasi sa grade po nmin… kailangan ko po kasing pataasin ung alexa rank ko po… pra lng po tlga sa grade.. nagmakaawa po ako… thank you po sana po maintindihan nyo po.. pra lng po tlga sa grade ko po e2..

    Like

  19. friend po pla ako ni kuya robert.. sinabi nya po na mgplink po ako sa inyo kasi po marrami po kyong visitors at mataas po kasi rank nyo po.. sana po ilink nyo po ako sa site nyo po.. pra lng po tlga sa grade ko po…

    Like

    1. haha, di naman mataas ang rank ko. dapat kila JehzLau ka nagpalink, kaso I doubt na malilink ka niya kase huminto na siya sa blogging. Anyways, sure! I’ll link you up. Hope makatulong ako para mapataas yung grade mo!

      Like

      1. Kaninang umaga pa? WAHAHAHAHAH! Hindi ba nabuo na uli yang taho na yan? Parang hindi na maganda tingnan– as in panget nung inimagine ko! Wahahahahaha.

        Like

Comments are closed.