Monday, 11 February 2008


Post 26: Lolo Ramon's Story

So how will this story end? I honestly don’t know. There are still so many events to narrate on how my grandfather’s children weaved their own unique web. Like when my Uncle Eddie earned his millions from hard work then had lost everything. But in losing all, it had brought him home and in nothingness he lived in the bounty of peace.

Another is how my Auntie Juling and Uncle Arsenio lived an early marriage to how they had managed to send all their nine children at SLU. To their travels at Kabayan Benguet and how they were known there specially by the farmers. How they started the Trading Post in La Trinidad. Then what was life after being with each other to finally one must join His creator and the other would stay to wait for her time to be with his love again.

It would also be worth telling how my Auntie Mary made a struggling business man in the person Of Moses Baking or the once known business tycoon MB11- Sto. Christo Vegetable Dealer came into existence.

The fourth child Auntie Betty’s story of why she came to Venice Italy. Then she went back home to teach at Little Angels (prep school of SLU) near the Cathedral till she became the Principal and was called Ma’am Beatrice Gragasin. This petite girl who once sings like an angel. To how she became the commentator or conductor to every mass held at the Cathedral till she finally stopped to battle her ailment.

And of course my Dad, Danny, on how he continued my grandfather’s leadership. How he served as a politician for more than twenty years and being our town’s Vice mayor. It would also be nice to compare what was politics during my ‘lolo’s’ time from my Dad’s. Another is how my father stood for his principle to serve Tublay. It would have been a chance to tell the real story about our struggles to pay from our meager earnings just for him to continue his fight against graft and corruption.

My Uncle Alex’s reason for leaving the seminary a year before he was to be ordained would also be very interesting to know. Then his reason of turning down SLU’s offer to be one of their proffessors and preferred to be a mere farmer. His days as one of the pioneer presidents of BIBAAK when the said organization was still starting. He is the kindest, most honest and wisest man I’ve ever known. Add his sensitivity and affectionate heart. He gave me a Louise L’moure book when I was still a groping 10 year old reader, a book I hardly finished and can’t remember what was it all about. I will surely miss his hugs and the comforting kisses on the forehead the next time we’ll go home. He died last Christmas when we were there. A Christmas lunch, an idea he gave to gather the whole family but wasn’t able to attend because he had a stroke.

The seventh child, Uncle Roger’s story as the Union Leader of Sto. Nino Mines after his cousin was shot to death - Their battle with the mines in making Ambassador people as their priority for job hiring is a good story to tell. And, how Uncle Roger died from a car accident just to shield his son.

The youngest, Auntie Gloria – how she had come to settle in Davao to why she eloped with Uncle Fando till they made it big in that City. How she had come to discover why a shipping magnet of Visayas and Mindanao was bearing my grandfather’s name. She may had opened my lolo’s long lost love back in the ‘hacienda’ – but our family decided to put an end to that. Introducing who we are might make them think we are after their money. If they wanted to know their roots, they would have done it a long time ago.

Most of all, it would have been a long story to write about my Lola Meding. Not only she had been a good wife, the best mother but also the super lola. She was suppose to enjoy her old age with the comfort of her rich children but no – she stayed and be the maid to her less wealthy ‘apos’(grandchildren).

Lanog was never found. Fontano’s children and the descendants of my great-great grandfather’s relatives are holding a yearly reunion. Last two years ago, it was held at my father’s house and I think the last one was in Nueva Vizcaya.

I have to end my story for now. My sister told me, How about us, don’t we have our own stories to write? What she asked left me wondering for days now. I’ve been thinking what extra ordinary there is to tell about us - the third generation. I seem can’t think of any and it even caused a blank thought on how will I continue my story.

Is it us or the world had changed? Is it wrong for most of us, the apo’s to be working away from home? We are here where everything you do is controlled by TIME. Its like we are only working for our family’s survival and we can’t help other people like Ramon did. What will my grandfather be proud of with today’s generation? Again, I honestly don’t know.

But deep inside me, my story will continue, it will never end. I have my children, nephews and nieces, they'll live to fill and write the next pages of my Lolo Ramon's story. To quote my father in law’s words, Children are constant reminders from God that life must go on. From this quote, I see the smile on my grandfather's face. " I lived a beautiful life", he said!

As I was writing this, my four year old son was also scribbling jumbled letters on his pad. He must have heard me telling his father early this morning that I have to end my story. Tonight my son Lukie told me, "Mama, I have to end my story". After writing some words he asked, "Mama, how will I write ‘The-end’?" and I started spelling the letters as he writes it one after the other.

This was how I ended this story on the forum where I first started to tell my Lolo's adventures. Weeks before I gave birth to my second son Dylan. I hope to write the coming chapters as I nurture this blog. THE STORY CONTINUES HERE...



Very nicely done. It's remarkable of your family not to be chummy with your rich Aunt from Davao. For me personally, I was just born not to beg from anyone.
Hahaha...Louis L'Amour, I've seen lots of his paperbacks scattered all thru the years, yet, never read one.
Cheers and goodhealth. You're right, your lolo's legacy will go on.


I ate some pinapaitan this weekend and thought again immediately of you, gayyem.
I just so love reading these stories. Been trying to write about my own heritage, but for some reason, I feel that it is something my Ilocano mom wants to keep for herself.
As for you, I am glad you are in touch with your roots and are able to write so skilfully about them.


There's an unforgettable moment between Frodo and Gandalf in "Lord of the Rings" that comes to mind: Referring to the ever growing threat of the Shadow, Frodo said he wished the dark days of Middle Earth didn't happen in his time. "'So do I,' said Gandalf and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.'"

We don’t live in such dark times, but we do live in a different slice of time than our forebears had. Not only are our challenges different, but so are our opportunities---all of which ultimately contribute to our life decisions. Yours brought you away from home. There is no shame in that nor should it cause you to doubt its worth. Life goes on and so your story continues. Continue what you have been doing; that is, making the most of the time that is given you to shape your own story while keeping alive the legacy that your forbears handed down to you. Reserve judgment of your own legacy to posterity, and I have no doubt that your own pages will be full of extraordinary stories in the continuing saga of your heritage. :)

I’d like to add that perhaps your grandfather and your other "apongs" are marveling at your extraordinary life now. It is, after all, not ordinary to let yourself be a part of the larger world and still embody the hearts and minds of those who went before you. :)


Ciao Trublue,

Twice I went to Davao and I was given special attention at their airport. They read my family name and said it loud. I know why because my aunt told me about the well known shipping magnet. I didn't correct the assumed identity cause I was nervous to be all by myself. Besides I felt like a "royal" and enjoyed it instead. So with my hipag who often goes there for conference.

Ciao Megamom,

Hmmnnn, yum-yummm. Miss that greenish food hehehe!

It was hard doing it. The thought of writing it or holding back some personal things were not easy.

It was only last October when my Dad read what I've wrote. My sister said it made him cry remembering all of it. I hope I can write about that soon. He was also surprised how I remember his stories, it made him happy and that's what its worth for me.

Ciao Hannah,

I just posted it now, wasn't able to do it yesterday. I joined the buggers in 'lala' land (lol).

Salamat manen kabsat!


hi lovelyn, thanks for another story about your lolo ramon and your family. i really enjoy reading them. i'd say i'm proud of you for being able to keep all the memories from your childhood.i look forward to more of it.


Ciao Jane,

Thanks. Really happy too that you've enjoyed reading it. Maybe being here is one of the reasons why I appreciate remembering all these stories. Another is the happy memories why I came to know them. Yeah, hope to write more about it.

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