Reading the anecdotes, narratives, and stories featured in “The Cebu We Know” resurrects, once again, the times that my feet had walked the streets of the “Queen City of the South.” In my mind, I am walking again along the side streets of Lahug ( somewhere in La-Guardia, near the BBRC compound and the old airport, now replaced by the Waterfront Hotel. I am hearing once again the siren emanating from the old airport’s control tower, the airport from which Pres. Magsaysay made his final trip before the fateful crash of 1957. I am once again riding the jeepneys -with codes instead of signboards as distinctions- plying the route Salinas Drive- Gorordo Avenue (named after the first Filipino bishop of Cebu, Juan Gorordo)- Mango Avenue (Maxilom Avenue-named after revolutionary leader Arcadio Maxilom) before going to school at University of San Carlos-Boys School (USC-BS), or those going to the downtown area near the magnificently -built Capitol area, a neo-classical edifice established during the American period. I remember the smell of barbeque and “puso” rice being sold at the many carinderias and eateries scattered throughout the city, such as Marisol’s (I hope I got it right), located right across USC-BS. remember my eyes gawking at the Fairmart and Gaisano malls and other old buildings at the old city area, one morning, more than two decades ago. I remember going to Mass at St. Therese parish church in Lahug and the Basilica Minore de Sto Nino, where, until now, I hear, devotees’ faith in the Child Jesus remain unshaken by last October’s “linog” (earthquake). Lastly, I remember the struggles of mine, as a Tagalog-born and bred lad trying to speak to classmates and acquaintances in a tongue that is both familiar and strange, easy and difficult to learn with.

Now, I guess, I have learned, and remembered, much.

“Daghan man ko nakasinati, ug nakahinumdum karon.”


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