WE GO THE ROUTE of the Sabado morning, Waipahu-style. 

First off is a prayer said in quick, random, and ritual way, one picked up from years of having been formed--or deformed whichever psychopathological result you have become--inside convent walls during the time of political cholera, religious dysentery, and intellectual typhus in the Philippines. We think of Martial Law here that starts off when one was to young to know why the DZJC or DZXI or DZVR was going rarek like a child with the rek-rek-rek of the phlegm that refuses to go away even if the mother has done all the ceremony of suob and warsi and the pespes-paria.

Second, that glass of water straight, put in with care on top of the morning fire, and after the takuri whizz-whizz, poured on a clear glass awaiting the perres, aka, lemon from Costco, the perres now in abundance to welcome the California summer. Soon, the golden price of the lemon perres will go down, and you remember that you have loved California for its cherries glistening in the summer sun and sold at 25 cents per pound when no Ilokano is looking. Because when the Ilokanos find out, the crates and crates of cherries would be gone in an instant. Yes, that is precisely where they are found, right off at the parking lot of the Carson branch of Fasfood City where the son of a neighbor now works those computer inventories so those manning the racks would be able to figure out which goody would go on sale because the expiration is about to go south.

Now this is an aside, and Jessica Eisch-Sarte, once my student of communications at a convent school, say a Saint Paul University somewhere, could attest to this, she being a resident part of that city: there is where all the Ilokanos are found, them Ilokanos who are on the lookout for bargain, for things on sale, for anything that goes half-price because they have to fill up--up to the brim--those balikbayan boxes that would be shipped to the da Pinas as regularly as they can.

And third, take up the task of being--and becoming--a houseboy.

So today, off we go to Festival Market where I renew my Ilokanoness, what with all the Ilokanos converging in these parts, from Monday to Sunday, and is absolutely no way of shooing them away anytime. Here, here in this part: you have not left Laoag, Vigan, San Fernando, Santiago, Bayombong, or Tuguegarao. Or you could be in Tacurong or GenSan where there, Ilokano the language is said in a singsong, its cadence and rhythm like the waves of sea of Cagayan that makes it sure that the Pacific Ocean and the West Philippine Sea (forget China Sea: that does not exist to me!) meet all the time to give us all the ipon in the world.

Ah, there goes the domestic duty: to carry those headful fish and samatis for a family that never learned how to go to the market except for the missus.

This is one addition to the definition of sabbatical: to go to town, also defined as going to the market.

Festival Market/11 Jan 2014

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