THIS CHANCE OF going away, away from the cares of the world to coax the long and winding road to rise up and meet you has given so much hope about writing and research.

These are twin obsessions, the fact of your being obsessed almost manic.

You do not write, you are nothing but an extinguished star.

You do not research, you are nothing but a 'parparawpaw,' to borrow a biting and sarcastic word of one of the pillars of Ilokano writing, Lorenzo Garcia Tabin Sr.

And so you rush everything, like those rushed note-taking you have to do, note-taking that leads you back to note cards that you are more comfortable using rather than those smartphone type one scholar has reminded you to keep using.

Afternoons see you going through the rounds of bringing your children to anywhere they want to go to keep holding back, or holding still, the hand of time.

You are about to leave soon, and for months, and you are about to take that journey back to your writing self, perhaps hiding in some nooks of the big, wide world.

Yesterday, you went to that ritual of having those passports renewed, and then the rains came, and then those other things you have to complete before you hit the road, and soar in the skies, any skies you want to go.

The rains were a blessing, and the wind on our face was something that salved your soul.

Where else you want to go? That was you, asking the kiddos.

To [the name of the shopping mall]! That were a chorus, not from the Greeks, but from the Agcaoili brood.

Okey, lead me to that. It was you, feigning ignorance of where to go.

The brood led you to where they want to go, and then there stood those behemoth of buildings courtesy of capitalism and Manhattan finance.

Okey, you tell them. Twenty dollars for each of you and buy whatever you want. Do not go beyond 20. If you go beyond it, you pay up. That was you.

You got your notes, xeroxed notes, and everything you needed to get hold of a mountain of information you are deciphering for a book project you have in the head.

An hour or so, the Agcaoilis came out, goodies on their hand, smiles as wide as the Pacific Ocean on their young, hopeful faces.

You tell yourself, this is oneing.


Pearlridge, Aiea, HI
29 Jan 2014

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