The One Great Journey

January 2, 2012

New Year's Eve was rather uneventful. The day was spent entirely on chores and checking a never-ending to do list. 
You realize you are a certified full time mother-in-progress when at the break of New Year's dawn, you are frying lumpiang shanghai and boiling spaghetti noodles from across your equally-busy mother-in-law in the kitchen instead of joining the rambunctious crowd.

In my in-laws' home in Bocaue, the fireworks capital of the Philippines, firecrackers and aerial lights started dying down one by one by 12 and stopped completely by 1:30am - an otherwise early end compared to previous years. By 6am, there was absolutely no trace of New Year's Eve on the streets. The noxious smell, the smog, and all leftover firecracker paper and material were gone.

Jigs and I went back home to our pack of dogs and antsy cats by lunch and slept off the rest of the afternoon. At dusk, I traipsed the tranquil streets of the subdivision to the small market two blocks away with the used up energy and languor of an elderly. Neighbors flocked quietly among themselves, recalling what had transpired a fortnight and months before that; stories of the past year like expensive caviar on their tongue.

Behind the buried noises of car horns, trumpets, clanking kalderos and the illegal-made-barely-so, was the magenta sky creeping by the light blue horizon. The green grass brushed against the cold wind, and one can hear their tiny voices against the vast space. It is indeed, a quiet New Year. But in the midst of all that silence, there was something in the day that filled the air beautifully like sky lanterns. Hope.

As I walked back home alongside my 6-year old dog, I remembered the good journeys I had last year and the better ones to look forward to in the year to come. Physically weary, I found reason to smile and sing silly songs in my head. I know that I had at least one great story happen to me: The story of a girl who was conceived on July of 2011, the one who baptized her mother by fire. I nurtured her as she nestled privately, an inner secret, in her mother's tensile womb.

This 2012, she will be brought out of the cocoon that protected her for nine months, and shall be made ready to face the world. She is my daughter, my first born, and in a few years, we will tread the streets on a lazy New Year afternoon and talk about deja vu. 

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