Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A Six Hour Vigil and Assumption Tarts

Conscience: 'What finally made you go to the six hour mass vigil which started at around 2:30pm and ended at 8:30pm yesterday?'  
Me: 'My wonderfully witty niece named Ada.' 
Conscience: 'She is brilliant!' 
Me: She got me to feel guilty. I hate that feeling.'

Who wants to be bored for six hours? I ran around the house yesterday yelling, 'I hate six hour mass vigils!' Somehow Ada heard me and said, 'That's like saying that for six hours you hate God.' And I was so taken aback by her statement that I decided to go to the six hour mass vigil even if I wanted to go back home and sleep. The more I thought about her statement, the more it made sense. And so I had no choice but to make my way to school and participate in the six hour long prayers and mass and singing. The main reason I had to attend the vigil was because I intentionally skipped my year's general assembly. I think I was so hungry that day that they had it and they had it at lunch tine. So I skipped it. When I got my clearance for midterms, the lady told me that because I skipped the general assembly, I had to attend the vigil. And I was like, 'Bring it on!' Because really, anything is better than attending a general assembly in which you have to act nice to strangers who pretend to like you.

Conscience: 'Why did you not want to go?' 
Me: 'Wh would want to go?'  
Conscience: 'No, really.'  

Like, who would seriously want to be in a vigil for six freaking hours? I am not a Catholic so I do not know anything about vigils, confession and everything religious! I get scared out of my wits when the priest asks us h confess and I sit there not knowing what to say. I get embarrassed when the whole chapel is singing some song that only I do not know. And let's just say that doing religious stuff is so awkward for me. As much as possible, I try not to get involved with any religious thingamajig. Also, I am just the laziest student you will ever meet. 

Conscience: 'So what happened?' 
Me: 'Terrible, exciting and wonderful things!' 
Conscience: 'Huh?' 
Me: Terrible, exciting and wonderful things!'

Let's just say that for every event during the vigil the students had to sign in and sign out. Funny thing was that I only got my slip of paper where they sign in and sign out after everyone else had signed in. Naturally, the sign in station was closed by the time I went there. So I just went along to the sign out station and explained my side. The officials looked at me with the how-the-heck-did-that-happen-but-we-are-scared-to-get-mad-because-you-look-scary-and-you-speak-well look. They signed my sign out thingamajig and I proceeded to the next event. 

I did not enjoy the vigil, but I enjoyed the photography workshop and the mass after. A photography workshop in the middle of a vigil? Oh yeah! Although I had one semester of photography, I loved the workshop because it was conducted by a professional, but self taught photographer. She was funny. She was human. She had lots of heart. I like professors like that! Why did I enjoy the mass? I actually enjoyed the mass because the ending was perfect! 

Conscience: 'What's with the picture of a tart?' 
Me: 'That was the highlight of my day!' 
Conscience: 'What is it?' 
Me: 'That is the famous Assumption Tart!'

Yes, that is the famous Assumption Tart! I say famous because my mom has been bragging about those tarts ever since I can remember. Mom gushes over those Assumption Tarts like it's a crime if you haven't tasted them. After the mass, the principal who is a nun gave a little speech about how happy she was that we all showed up. We were clapping and all when she said something like, 'Free Assumption Tarts for all!' The more we cheered! And that is how I ended up tasting my first Assumption Tart. 

The funny thing is that it was pouring outside and I had to walk home. That was at around 8:40pm. I had an umbrella, but the rain was strong and I refused to eat my Assumption Tart until I got home because I wanted to take a picture of it. Why? I wanted to show my mom that I finally had tasted it! I was so careful that the rain did not get to it. When I entered the house, Ada and Téa ran to greet me. And they were like, 'What's that? Assumption Tart? Can we have it?' Good thing their mom told them that they could not have it. =) 

I text messaged my mom at 9:04pm yesterday and said, 'After almost seven hours of mass and vigil, the nuns rewarded us with Assumption Tarts! They taste good!' I guess my mom was happy that I went to the vigil 'cause she replied with, ' Hahaha. The Lord will hound you wherever you go and reward you with more than Assumption Tarts!' 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

You. Yes, you!

Some poem.

The professor for Women in Philippine Literature asked all of us to write a poem about ourselves. It is supposed to tell people who hate us or do not understand us who were really are. It is also a way for us to explain ourselves in hopes that people around us understand why we are what we are. Although I believe that a person does not have to explain why he or she is the way he or she is, I just did the assignment anyway. I was pretty please with how it turned out. A warning though! Some things may be exaggerated just because I like it that way. 

Yes, you
Talking to you about me
Asking please let me be

Crazy ideas to you they may seem 
But to me I am just living out dreams
Walking through markets taking pictures of vendors
Inhaling smoke while passing out liquor

Yes, you
Talking to you about me
Asking please open your eyes to see

Rainbow colored hair does not mean I am a rebel
Nor am I trying with authorities to wrestle
So please get out those wrong impressions
Because this is all about expression!

Yes, you
Talking to you about me
Asking please hear me!

I can understand your language but very little can I speak
You treat me like a bitch that is your technique
My tongue is used to english
In your eyes I have diminished

Yes, you
Talking to you about me
Asking please accept my faith in thee

I do not have any religion
Yet was raised believing in the God who is hidden
Living out my faith in my own way
No, I am not going astray

Yes, you
Talking to you about me
Asking please, please let me be

Ada is Seven!

August 9, 2012

Happy birthday, Ada!

Last year, when I came to live with my Manong and the rest of the gang, I totally thought that I would not get attached to the kids. I was not close with Ada, Téa and Gusto. Sure, when we would meet up I would play and chat with the kids. But that was all. I was totally freaked out when Mom told me that I had to live with them because my relationship with the kids was based on, well we did not have a relationship. Yet when I saw the smiles of the kids when they found out I was gonna live with them, I knew that we were off to a good start! The kids not only make me laugh, but they actually have made me become aware of tons of things I missed out on life.

 Here are a number of things Ada taught me in my seven months of living with her and the rest of the gang. 

You cannot not care about children no matter how naughty they are. On the second day of my stay with them, I was in the TV room watching some dumb show when I heard Ada run to the kitchen. I thought she was getting some food from the refrigerator, but when when I looked she was trying to climb the cabinets to get some snacks. I almost had a heart attack from fright! I ran to her and she said, 'Tita Anna, you know I need your help. So thanks for coming to my rescue.' 

According to Ada, Lord Voldemort's heart is black. She says that it is black because love does not live in it. And although love does not really come from our heart, Ada reminds everyone to let love live in it. When Téa and Gusto fight, she says in her singsong voice, 'Fighting means you have a black heart and love does not live in it!' And when Ada cries herself into a fit because of this and that, we remind her that for love to live in her heart she must not be angry at so and so. She stops crying after that. 

Ada just loves Les Misérables! She knows all the songs and can sing all of them well. She can go on and on about Cosette and Fantine and all those other confusing French names. One song talks about dreams being put to death. I have known that song for a long time already, but I never really thought about the words.'Have your dreams ever been put to death?' Ada asked me one day. Without waiting for my response, she said, 'Don't ever let anyone put your dreams to death Tita Anna!' 

You have got to read, read, read and read some more! It does not matter if you are brushing your teeth, eating lunch, pretending to watch TV, walking in the mall, taking a bath, doing your school requirements or playing in the park. You have just got to read! And do not just read those fiction books. Read those books with tons of facts! Like an almanac or an encyclopedia. Do research about new animals, new technology, concepts of science you do not understand and anything else you can think of. Read a book to younger children. They love it. Recommend good books to your friends. Spend your recess and lunch breaks in the library. Borrow books. Get your Greek, Roman and Norse mythology straight! Ada does all these things. 

I think the last and the most important thing Ada made me realize was that I really had to smile more. That was a wake up call to me to find joy in everything that I did, to find reasons to be happy when the situation was tough and to share smiles even with people who were mean to me. What shocked me was that she was so honest and so sincere when she told me that I had to smile more. She really meant it. And yet she did not and still does not realize how her simple words made an impact in my life. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


My parents think that I am so lazy. My mom gets a mini heart attack when mid terms and finals come because she thinks that I take exams lightly. She would be surprised if she knew how hard I had to study for sociology and statistics last semester! My dad gets worried when I cannot answer in Filipino. He thinks that I am too lazy to learn the language or that I am not interested at all. What he does not know is that I have tried my best, but Filipino and I just cannot seem to get along. My mom thinks that in about three years I will be out of college, looking for a job when I realize that I was really meant to be an educator. My dad, on the other hand, thinks that by the time I graduate I would be thinking, 'Why did I not move to Singapore?'

My nieces and nephew think that I am the most amazing person that came to live with them. Ada, Te'a and Gusto think that I am their babysitter, their storyteller, the person who spoils them with candies, the human being who can finish their Kumon worksheets and their living iTunes who has to sing The Man Who Can't Be Moved a million times to them. As soon as I am done with school, Ada wants me to have children so she has playmates. Te'a just wants me to grow my hair longer and make it look like a rainbow. Gusto, well, he is two and all he thinks about is food.

My friends think that I know how to write. Ever since grade school I have been doing their english homework, making their speeches, proof reading their essays and even editing their work. They do not even ask me to please to help them. They just dump their work on me and expect me to work magic for them. They also think that because I am in media production that I know how to shoot music videos, do voice overs, make scripts and edit films. Then they get the grade and the credit and I get the sleepless nights and the headaches. My friends say that after college, they think that I will be this person who can come up with an idea and execute it.

Society thinks that I am proud and sassy. They think this because I came from La Salle College and I am now in Assumption. For many people, Lasallians are proud, arrogant and boastful. And the girls from Assumption are sassy. Put that together and you have got the most self absorbed, conceited person. Society dictates that by the end of my stay in college, I should know everything there is to know and learn about media production. I should be able to name dozens of communication theories, come up with a storyboard in less than an hour, be an expert at staying up late to cram the editing of videos and know who directed what movie and who starred in it.

In reality, I am Anna Fernandez Morales. And right now I have forgotten my speech. But I do know that I am lazy, opinionated, happy, content, hyperactive and sleepy. Why am I in this course? I am in this course because this is all I have known my whole life since my dad brainwashed me with his words and art to be in the same field he is in. Three years from now, I will be as lost and as disoriented as I was on the first day of college. I will still wonder if I was meant for this course of I can really write, direct, edit or even come up with a concept. But I know that wherever I will be three years from now is exactly where I should be. 

* I had to do this speech for my oral communication class. The guide questions were something like, Who are you? Why are you here? Where are you going?' And I thought to myself, 'Screw that! I'll make my speech go in circles so that I can just say that I really have no idea where my life is going.' And it worked! =)