GTGL Snippets: Santa, Ilocos Sur, Philippines
Our dad has told me countless times how often he would bring me to this beach as a kid; not just for the view or the opportunity for father-daughter bonding, but to help me with my breathing. When I was young, I suffered some respiratory problems, and the sea, it is believed (by those who lived in this part of the globe, at least), has curative powers.
As a kid, of course, I didn’t bother about the reasons. Any chance to feel the sand between my toes and dip my feet into the water is welcome. The excitement, of course, is heightened with the anticipatory eventuality of being allowed to submerge my whole body in the ocean and swim.
I have no recollection of these little jaunts where it’s just me and our dad. Knowing how inclusionary his character is, he most like always had everyone that would and/or could come, come along. But the images in my head show only me with my grandparents, my siblings, my mom, my cousins, my uncle and his wife. To be honest, there are very few images where my dad was present. Perhaps, it was because he had been based in the U.S. for a huge part of our childhood. The mind is tricky like that.
Fast forward to the morning of January 16, 2016….
After a night of vigil, two days before we laid to rest the most gentle soul I know, my beloved grandmother, I asked our dad to take a walk with me to a place I knew so well as a little girl, and arguably my favorite spot in this coastal town. Everything looked to different, yet so familiar…you know how it is.
The conversation, the company, the view…it would be a moment shared with our dad that I will forever remember.