Zamboanga of my Dreams (Part 12) PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 21 February 2015 13:52

By VIRGINIA F. ELIAS

 

In a moment of sorrow, we join the keening cries of the mourners for the police troopers who became heroes.

The taps every evening at the nearby airbase remind us of the vigil by every one, as we unburden ourselves of our anxieties for the morrow. We fervently pray for peace.

After an inertia of listlessness, I felt like “a house about to crumble”.

Christmas that was. the New Year’s welcome, the visit of Pope Francis, Valentine, and the Chinese New Year’s zodiac sign, gave us hope to dream again

And so, I dream again and revisit the years 1948-1952. The years were full of expectation, excitement, disappointment, also sorrow. It was still a period of reconstruction.

After sometime our family had a bigger house constructed at the Urdaneta-Barcelona lot.

We continued to share with the Continental Beauty Parlor Circle, the ground floor of our house. Nene Padogmog. the head of the group, had a sister, wife of Iloilo mayor then senator Rodolfo Ganzon. together with her family visited them often.

Senator and Mrs. Roseller T. Lim and family were friendly neighbors.

My father, Atty. Jose C. Fernando, who was appointed City Councilor, was elected as Councilor and re-elected.

When a delegation of Zamboanga City government officials and leading citizens, headed by Don Pablo Lorenzo, paid a courtesy call on President of the Philippines, Elpidio Quinno at Malacaftang. my father was with the group

We had a simple lifestyle and my allowance was not much,  I had to help in the household chores. But my secret garden was my love for reading. I would visit my aunt Victoria F Domingo, in Pasonanca and shared with her my love for reading. Her family warmly shared me hospitality

We also visited often relatives in Sta. Maria like Tio Lario and Tia Trona Fernando and family. Tia Trona cheerfully prepared for us her favorite recipe o fginataan mais.

Zamboanga City High School became my academic home for four years. The City High that was, was at Baliwasan. near the Zamboanga Normal School (WMSU) and the Trade School.

The School’s walls at that time, were still of sawali materials, but through the years, it has nurtured many dreams of glory.

Academically, the students were lucky to receive a high standard of instruction from competent and erudite principal and teachers. I will talk more about them in another chapter

I struggled with lessons during the early years and held in awe my elders and brothers.

I had nightmares in geometry, math and the like, but found my oasis in literature, English and history

Learning was the primary concern, but activities enhanced learning.

Camaraderie bloomed and I shared happy moments, adventures and misadventures with friends, sharing secrets, eating lunch baon under the shade of the bamboo tree, going home in the afternoon via Cawa-Cawa Boulevard watching the ebb and flow’ of the tide and splash of the waves on the shore.

In a flashback-cataloging the group: Feliciana D Mandi, Rosa Faustino Climaco, Esther Dagalea, Clarissa De La Cruz. Peregrina Cruz, Cion Benito Fernando, Lucia Santos. Carmen Benito Aquino, Carmelita Camagay Bretana, Socorro Molina, Luisita and Zenaida Zabala. Concesa Herrera Fernando, Teresita Natividad, Norma Soriano Falcatan. Teresita Agudera, Monserrat Brussett, Rosalina Bennett, Ramona Macapili, Wenesfrida Pamalaraan,  Beatrice Cha, Cruzada Alegria. Lydia Miras. Julieta Del Rosario, Teresa Alonso, Avelina Enriquez, Elena Aguilar, Estrella Mari, Leticia Malcampo, Florentina Zamora, Victoria Ejanda, Felisa Delos Reyes, Mercedes Failuga, Rosa Candido, Justiniana Toledo, etc.

Dr Ireneo Cases, our brilliant president of the class, whom we expected to became a lawyer, chose to became a doctor. When asked why, he later confided the why so and why not.

The cataloging continues — Jesus Cabato,  Armando Flores. Ide Tillah,  Eufrocinio Bernabe, Segundo Ruste, Antonio Tagudiña, Ruben Foncardas, Florencio Batausa, etc.

We have started the period of Lent. We do our penance. “Dust thou art. to dust returnest”