My father was a good man, hard-working + fun-loving at the same time. Most people who don’t know him personally would think he is a snob, or would remember him as the old guy, with his cigarette + beer bottle perched on his bike, biking around the neighborhood in the morning, or later on, hanging out in my Mama’s grave at the crack of dawn,  but there is more to this guy than meets the eye. He was a good provider + I have to say he was in touch with his feminine side. I fondly remember how he’d easily cry over an MMK episode or how he was not able to finish watching the movie, The Passion of  The Christ, simply because he cannot tolerate whatever violence he was seeing on the screen! He loves watching action-packed films, instead, + you’d easily spot him watching + re-watching his favorite James Bond movies on CD’s.

One thing I love about my Papa is his love for music. I miss waking up to the sound of his favorite oldies but goodies tune on the radio. I miss hearing him belt a few lines from one of his favorite, Unchained Melody, spontaneously. When I was younger, I’d change the radio stations whenever I had the chance to so I can hear recent tunes, much to his irritation.

My old man also loves reading (yeah, I got that habit from him too ;)) + you will always see him with nose buried over the current spreadsheet or finishing a crossword puzzle in one of those tabloids he buy regularly. I used to mimic that when I was a tad small + I’d remember struggling to fold the newspaper that was even bigger than me! The crossword puzzles I can sometimes finish, though, + if I can’t I’d simply ask him for answers ;)  He also likes reading Reader’s Digest (we have copies dating back to 1963, he used to be a subscriber back then) + would read a copy while waiting to fall asleep during his afternoon naps.

I remember writing him cards on his birthdays + on Father’s Days when I was much little, I remember too that he’d kept some of them along with other keepsakes in his files. I remember how he’d refuse to throw my old notebooks away + kept them somewhere. My father is one sentimental guy.

When I was pregnant with my son, I had a dream about my Papa a day before Father’s Day. We were having this conversation when he handed me this swad of bills telling me that I keep it my savings for my son. When I checked everything else is Japanese paper money from old (we have stacks of those in my father’s possession) apart from a single 20-peso bill. In my dream I was thinking my old man is probably getting old. Afterwards, he asked me if I think he’d still be around much longer so he can look after my son. I remember telling him that he has to be since he will  help me raise my son. I remember crying when I wake up from that dream, believing that it was my father’s way of telling me that he approved of my son + that no matter where he is now, he loves him no less! He would’ve adored my son, he would’ve loved him to bits + spoil him too. I wish Jared was able to know his grandfather, he would’ve enjoyed his company + they would’ve played + laughed to their hearts’ content. I regret that my son will grow up not experiencing the warmth + the love of grandparents.

If my Papa were here with us today, my siblings + I will probably take him out to eat or watch a movie that he likes. I am so certain he won’t approve of strolling in the mall, as he dislikes doing that + would just easily ask that we go home soon enough. Well, I guess, we can contend with a visit to his grave later in the afternoon when the weather clears up.

I know that you are looking down on us, Pa. I know, too, that you are praying for my son. We miss you every single day Pa + if we can, we would’ve wished you back!  We love you very much, Pa! Happy Father’s Day!

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