Thursday, October 20, 2016

Three Big Events in Isinay Bird's Life

I wanted to make up for lost time in keeping this blog stay afloat, but somehow three big events of tsunami proportions in my life as a lesser mortal, if I may be verbose about it, slowed me from doing so.

FIRST EVENT
I'm now in the USA. My wife and I arrived here in New Jersey on August 20, 2016 (taking the route from Baguio to Manila to Taiwan to Los Angeles to New York).

It took a while for me to go through the eye of the needle to come here.

SECOND EVENT
You must have learned about this through Facebook: MY MOTHER DIED.

This was on Sept 19, when I was only 28 days old in the USA.

As is expected, I needed to go home to at least see her for the last time.

Being the eldest in the family, the days that followed my mom’s departure had made me very busy, to say the least.
Two days after we interred my mother’s remains in Dupax on Sept 28, I went up to Baguio and maximized “apostolic” time with my two grandkids there until the evening of Oct 7 when, in the face of an increasingly inclement weather, my son and I motored straight up to NAIA 1 to catch my 4:00AM Oct 8 flight to New York (via Taipei).

THIRD EVENT
Again, you must have heard of this via friends on Facebook: I WAS RUSHED TO THE HOSPITAL.

This was the day after I had barely resumed and warmed my joyful seat (along with Mrs. Castro) as lolo-cum-nanny to my 5-month-old twin grandkids here at New Jersey.

It was a case of diverticulosis (“a condition where the colon develops little pockets or potholes as a result of a diet relatively low in fiber and high in animal products”). Sakit kano ti lakay daytoy (“about half of all people over age 60 have it”).

Ti kunada ket harmless ti diverticulosis. Ngem sabali ti naaramid kaniak ta uray awan ti nariknak a nasakit, naibusanak iti dara after at least five successive visits to the “comfort” room.

To make the story short, nagbakasionak idiay Jersey City Medical Center iti exacly one week (Oct 10 to Oct 17) ta bimmaba kano unay ti blood pressure ken hemoglobin daytoy kabsatyo.

HAPPY TO BE BACK
Now I’m back in this beautiful place of the Garden State near the Hudson River where my daughter and son-in-law (born in New York, his mother is from Pamplona, Cagayan and his father is from Villasis, Pangasinan) are raising their twin daughters.

I’m still in recuperating mode, but rest assured I’ll try my best to catch up with on what I was supposed to catch up with before these three events happened.

Monday, July 4, 2016

The First Komiks in Isinay

SOMETIME LAST May, I burned the midnight candle (to use an ancient cliche) giving the rainbow to two entries required from applicants for the 5th Cordillera Creative Writing Workshop. One is a komiks (titled "APU LITTUU" and complete with illustration by my nature artist friend Dante N. Pecson), and the other is an essay ("Eve an Mantahtahelle' si In-a-Isinay Uwar: Deyomdom on Nu'nu' si Osan Lahay").

The workshop was supposed to be sponsored by University of the Philippines Baguio and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and was scheduled to be held at UP Baguio on 18-22 July 2016.

As it developed, however, the event was moved to October or sometime later this year.

From what I heard, the postponement was made as there were not enough takers from the linguistic groups (namely: Ibaloy, Kankanaey, Tingguian, Bontoc, Ifugao, Kalinga, Isnag, Gaddang, Ibanag, Ivatan, Itawes, Karao, Kalanguya, Iowak, Isinay, Kapampangan, Ilokano, and Pangasinan) targeted as participants.

The senior Isinay in me has no illusions that my two nonfiction entries may get the nod of the screening committee. But since there is a high probability that I may be out of the country by the time this would-be historic writing workshop pushes through (which means that I may not be able to participate in the workshop after all), I opted to share in this blog the script of one of my outputs -- a komiks that as far as I know is the first ever to be written in Isinay.

Eh, abeveyoya' an Isinay on i-Vizcaya, matuttuwa on maserot an pan-alegan tiyen sutsur. Mu ahayhayan yun poroban, ayon yun pasyalon di bida nar an si Ama Dopinio Mento, osan Kalanguya an taga Sitio Kakilingan, Barangay Buenavista, Bayombong (siri baiyurar si udduwon Busilac, an mavangte mu diyoy at di anduoyar deyangtoy siri Batu Ferry, Bambang).

APU LITTUU
KOMIKS

Insutsur CHARLZ CASTRO
Indrowing DANTE N. PECSON


Page 1
ATTU RI ITSORANAR SITIO KAKILINGAN, OSAN MAN-OH AN BEVEYOY SIRI UDDUWON BARANGAY BUENAVISTA, MABAIYUR AN LUGAR AN SAHUPON BAYOMBONG, NUEVA VIZCAYA.

SIREDYEN POTO’ YA PAMPATPATTOLAN TAY SI BAHA ON NUWANG TIYEN KAKILINGAN. OPONG SI TIYEHAW YA LOHAVANDA RI IMMOTONGAR DARIN BOTLONG TOY AYAWON DI AYOPAR DARI RI MISANOTAR AN BEYUN BOTLONG.

MANSU’NUT DIYEN INDEKLARAN DI GOBYERNO WAR AN COMMUNITY-BASED FOREST MANAGEMENT AREA TIYEN LUGAR, NANTANTANOM RI TATAHU WAR DARIT AYU-AYU ON URUM TAY AN PAMBILAYAN. BESAN YA SIMMEROT MOT KAKILINGAN.


Page 2
MARAWUM AMMAIYANAR SI GAYHAYA SI TATAHUWAR SIRI KAKILINGAN BESAN YA SIMBEYANAR AN DOPINIO ON MEDINA MENTO. MITMITTU DARATYEN KALANGUYA SIRI URUDDU WAR PODDAN PARTEN SI KAKILINGAN.

BEYAW MARIN ATDIT AREEYANAR AN ABEVEYOYANA AN AY-AYAN DA LAN MAVILAY SI BAIYURAR, MASEROT DONGNGEYON RI SUTSUR DI NAMPASAN DA DOPINIO WAR.

MATANDALAN TAY DOPINIO MU ANDIYE BILAYAR SIRI KAKILINGAN SIREDYEN POTO’.


DOPINIO: “SIRIYEN 1980 AN DIMMATONG AMITTU KAKILINGAN... MAROOT TAY ON MASULIT PIYO’ NAR TOY KODAL IMAN SI BAHA.

“MU TIYEHAW AN LOHAVAN DA URUMAR BAIYUR, UMALI RI APUYAR SITU LUGAR MIYAR. OT NAYYIR PODDAN MAAPIT MIT TANOM MIYAR DARIN LAMOS TOY MEPA ON MATOY RAT MATUNGAR... ATDI PAY SI URUMAR BUWEN, MATDUANAN TAYO’TO AR DARI...

“ATDI PAY AN MABATUM PODDA TIYEN LUGAR. SIN-OTSA TAY RI AYU-AYU NAR TOY DODDOT DA IMAN AN LOHAVAN. ANDOHLAN MU TIYEMPON SI TIYEHAW YA ALATLAN DISYERTO AN MATUNG... MASAIT PODDA BILAY MIYAR.

“MU DIYOY ILAT MAPARAS SI TANOM MIYAR DARI, NEYYIR PAYLAT SERBI RA MU UMALIN MANGGATIN ON MANUTTUR RI DEEYAR BAHA. OT MU LAVI ILA YA DIYOY RAT URUM TATAHU AN MANGERAW SI BUNGAN DI NAMPAHELAN MIYAR.”

Page 3
DOPINIO: “MAVILAY LOHOM PAMILYAAR, NILLAT OSAN INAPYA’ — MANALINUT BAVUY, MANLAHOT ITUNGU, INPATANGDAN U NUWANG UWAR..."

DOPINIO: “IMMOYA’ PAY NANGAN-ANUP SI ADDAWIYAR LUGAR... IMBUYA’ PAY NILILLIYA’ SI URUMAR TATAHUT TU BUENAVISTA ON URUMAR BEVEYOY...

“ATDI PAY AN INESEP UN UMULI AMI MOT LOHOM SIRI NI’BUSAN MIYAR AN MABAIYUR ON ADDAWIN BEVEYOY SI AMBAGUIO.

“WAR NANAWIRAR ISAON AN TUMAYAN SIREN MASAITAN AMI TAY PODDAT BILAYAR SITU KAKILINGAN YA OTANG UWAR MAVVES NOMNOM I APU GAVINO ACOSTA. SIYAT NANAH-A ISAON AN UMALITTU.”

GAVINO ACOSTA: “MAVVES TOY IMMALI AYUTTU MAN-OHAR BEVEYOY MIN BUENAVISTA! DOMON YUN MITTUT TU… MANTUNAT AHAYHAYAN YU. NARARAN AMIN MANGIATOR SI DA’DA’ IRA’YU BASTA MARI AYUN MAMOTBOT SI AYU.”

DOPINIO: “SALAMAT PODDA, APU GAVINO. AHAYHAYAN MITTU LUGAR YUWAR. ILALOWAN YU AN ABVESON MIN SIMBEYAN RI ISF MIYAR.”

DOPINIO: “SI MAVVESAR PEYAR, SIREN 1984, INLAPUN DENR RI PROGRAMA NAR AN INTEGRATED SOCIAL FORESTRY SITU NUEVA VIZCAYA. NIPEYAR AN SAON SI OSAN NITOTEN PARTICIPANT-BENEFICIARY.”

DENR FACILITATOR: “THE ISFP SEEKS TO DEMOCRATIZE ACCESS TO FOREST RESOURCES. IT IS BASICALLY AGRARIAN REFORM IN THE UPLANDS.”

Page 4
DIYOY SI DINAWAT DOPINIO ON A-ISU NAR DARIN UPLAND FARMERS AN PAPELES NI’BUS SI DENR AN NANGARANAN SI CERTIFICATE OF STEWARDSHIP CONTRACT.

FORESTRY DIRECTOR: “OTOY RI CSC MAR, UWA DOPINIO... IT GIVES YOU TENURIAL SECURITY FOR 25 YEARS, RENEWABLE FOR ANOTHER 25. CONGRATULATIONS!”

DOPINIO: “SALAMAT SI DEEM PODDA IRA’YU, APU DIRECTOR ROMY ACOSTA!”

BOON AN ATDIT URUMAR SOCIAL FORESTRY PARTICIPANTS, TINUTTUWAN DOPINIO RI NISULATAR SI ISFP CERTIFICATE OF STEWARDSHIP CONTRACT NAR.

DOPINIO: “ANDIYE NI RI MAVVESAR ITANOM SI NIATORAR AN LUGAR MIT TU BAIYURAR? AHAYHAYA’ TANOMAR DARI AN AMPAYLAMU MARI YA’ MAMOTBOT SI AYU, YA MARIN MAABOLEYAN RI BILAY MIYAR AN SINPAMILYA.”

SI PANGAN-ANANAP DOPINIO MU ANDIYE RI MAVVESAR DARI AN ITANOM NA, IMMOY NANANSANTUT URUMAR TATAHU ON NAMPASYAL SI URUMAR BEVEYOY.

DOPINIO’S WIFE MEDINA: “DOPINIO, SANGKANAN DODDOT AN TUMAYTAYAN?!! ANNU, DIYOY SI MARIIT AN AYOM AR-ARUGON?!!”

DOPINIO (THINKING OUT LOUD): “DUPAX=MANGO. KASIBU=CITRUS. BAGUIO=STRAWBERRY. SANTA FE=HANDICRAFT. BELANCE=YAKUN. DALTON PASS=ORCHIDS.”

Page 5
AMUNGLAN NITDAN SI MASAIT SUVVETON ON MANGANGNGA’ AN LOHMO’, EHAWAN TA LAVI AN NAN-ESE-ESEP SI DOPINIO. NI’NAM NIYE, OSAN EHAW...

DOPINIO (SHOUTING): “ALLELUYA! AMTA’ MOT! AMTA’ MOT! LITTUU!!!”

NILAWUS RI GAYHAYAN DOPINIO WAR SI NAESEP NAR AN ITANOM SI LUGAR NAR SIRI BAIYURAR — AWWOY AN MAMBUNGAT LITTUU.

DOPINIO: “SALAMAT, APU DIYOS. TUWA RI INADDI MAR… MU ANAPOM, YA MAANAPAM!”

NANBEVOY SI ESEP DOPINIO WAR RI DINGNGE NAR DARIN SUTSUR MIPUN SI LITTUU.

SITU URUDDUN LUZON, DEEN BEVEYOY ANU, ALIMBAWA NUEVA VIZCAYA, QUIRINO, IFUGAO, ISABELA, ILOCOS, ON BAGUIO, AN AHAYHAYAN PODDA RI BAVAYI YAR DARI, PASI UUNGA, AN ANON DI LITTUU WAR. MU NEYUTU AMPAY TIYE YA MASANTAN SI MAMIS RI DATI YAR MAESOM AN TAMTAM NA.

NATANDALAN PAY DOPINIO RI INILA NAR DARIT DI BAMBANG AN BURUWON DA NEYAMSANAR AN LITTUU. MAVVES ANU TIYEN TAPAL SI UU’ ON TONSILITIS.

MU NEYIR SOMPALO, MANGGA, O MU KALAMANSI, DOMO NA ANUN PANLOHOS SI SINIGANG RI LITTUU WAR. ATDI PAY MU KILAW AN I-AN ON MANLAPTULAPTU’ AN AHDAW AN NGARANAN DAT JUMPING SALAD.
DINGNGE NA PAY AN AMPLAMU MATA TAY YA AYAWON ANU RI MANSISIPE YAR DARI.


OSATAY NANU’NU’ DOPINIO YA NEYIR TAY INILA NA AMPLAMU OSAN NANTUVUN LITTUU O MU ANDEMAN AN AWWOY SIRI KAKILINGAN ON BUENAVISTA.

BAYAW OT MARIN NALILLIWA, DIYOY PAT OSAN PROBLEMA...


DOPINIO (THINKING): “PANGEYA’ NGAY SI BUE? SIRI SIERRA MADRE? SIRI BANAUE? ADDAWI RAM PODDA. I-ATOR U MOT LOHOM PAMPILETE AR SI ANA’ UWAR DARIN MAN-IKWILA.

“OT MU SIRI ILA DALTON PASS ON SANTA FE SI PANGANAPA’ SI BUE, MARAWUM DARAMONA’ PAY BI-AL UWAR. AY APU, SI SATYEN IN-ALAHAY U, SUSPETSO NA TAY AN MANGARUGA’ SI URUM!”

Page 6
MAVVES LOHOM TOY DIYOY PAT NAESEP DOPINIO AN SOLUSYON: OMOY SIRI BEVEYOYAR BAMBANG AN MAVANGTE MU DIYOY AT DI BAIYURAR KAKILINGAN.

TSISMOSA #1: “EH, KUMARI, ILAM DYU LEIYAR... MILAHLAHAYAN AN MAMMUNG SI BUEN SI LITTUU... WAN MANSISIPE BI-AL NAR?”

TSISMOSA #2: “PSSSTT… BA’BA’ A… WAPAY NI’BUS NIYET DI MENTAL HOSPITAL!”

SIMPIYUN BUE LOHOM RI IMMUNG DOPINIO WAR SIRI BAMBANG. BAYAW SOSTO MOT TIYEN PANLAPUWAN, INADDI NAT ESEP NAR.

DOPINIO (WHISPERING): “TIPE LOHOM. URITTI’ LA INUMMUNG UWAR BESAN, BAYAW AS-ASUP PAY BEYOY MIYAR SITU BAMBANG. ASA’ TU PAY UMULI.”

TINANDALAN DOPINIO RI INTUTTURUN DI OSAR AN MANLAHLAHOT ORKID ON SEMILYAN SI AWWOY SIRI SANTA FE.

DOPINIO (NICKING LITTUU SEEDS): “TA WEYMU MANTUVUN INSEGIDA, AY-AYUNOM AN ALSON RI U’BUNG DI TUUTU’ DI BUE YAR AN BUTTAN DI SAMILYA NAR.

“MU URYA’ APYON TIYEN TEKNIK, SINTAW-ONAN NANUNG MANTUVU TIYEN BUE. BOON ILA YA MATOY.”

Page 7
SIREDYEN NANLOTA’ RI NAUN-UNAR DARIN BUE, NAMMUNG PAT DOPINIO SI MAS DEE TAY AN BUE. AMUNG AMMAIN LOHAV, NITETAH INSEGIDA AN DIYOY SI OSAPAY AN AP-APYON DOPINIO.

WOMAN #1: “ANAY APU, ANDE NIN DAHOM RI LIMMOOVAR SI IYUN DOPINIO WAR?”

WOMAN #2: “LITTUU?!? SIRAN SI NANGIVAHAN MANTUVU NIYET TU?”

FARMER #1: “AYYU-AYYU, SI’NUN BUWEN MOT PELAOVOS AN MAN-AT-ATNA NIYEN LAHAY. NILAWUS NI PANKABAW NAR.”

MAN #1: “MANTANTANOM ANUT AWWOY SI DOPINIO??! HA-HA-HA... NAVILAW! NANGILAM AN MANTUVU RI AWWOY YAR?”

MAN #2: “MATANDALAM TAY SIREN BEYU TAU DIMMATONG SITU KAKILINGAN? MISABSAVAYAT NET DOPINIO SI PUN SI BALITIYON.”

SARI-SARI STORE KEEPER: “MAHO’GOSAN… BAYAW ATNA MAAPYAR SI TATAHUWAR DARIN NILAWUS RI ESEP DAR...”

TSISMOSA #1: “ADYON BI-AL MEDINA, AN OPONG SI EHAW YA MANEYTEYA’NUT LAHAY NAN DOPINIO AN OMOY MANUBUH SI TANOM NAR DARIN AWWOY. KESUS-MADIYA-KUSEP, PATAWAROM. MAVVES LOHOM TOY MARIN ATNA RI LAHAY UWAR!”

TSISMOSA #2: “SIYARI IMAN, KUMARI… PAREHON MAMBUTO-VUTONG RI LAHAY UWAR ON LAHAY MUWAR, BAYAW NEYYIR URUM PANBILBILAWANDA MU BOON AN ALAH ON SEROT TAR... ANDIYE BOTAON DOPINIO WAR SI DARANEN AWWOY?”

AMTAN DOPINIO AN SIYAT PANSUSUTSURAN DI TATAHUWAR DARIT DI KAKILINGAN. BAYAW URYA NA DIRAN PINELET. KADA DIYOY SI MAONNANAN BUEN SI LITTUU ON URUM TAY AN AWWOY, AYONA INSEGIDA DIRAN ITANOM SIRI AGROFORESTRY FARM NAR SI BAIYURAR. SIREN UN-UNANA, OMOY AN SINDOSENA LOHOM RI ITANTANOM NAR. MARIN NALILLIWA, SIN-GOMGOM BOON ILA YA NILASLASUS MOT RI PANLOTLOTAONAR.

MU SINDANGAN MOT RI AMMAIYAN DI SAMILYA NAR DARI, AYONA DIRAN I’TAN SI GITAWAR. KADA OSAN SAMILYAN SI LITTUU AN I’TAN NA, DIYOY SI ALUUY NA AN SAMILYAN SI NARRA, GMELINA, MAHOGANY, OMU URUM TAY AN AYU. TINAMNAN DOPINIO RI CBFM AREA NAR, PALIWOR DI BEYOY RAR, TANDIH DI DEYANAR, PASI URUMAR BAIYUR. BESAN MOT YA LIVU-LIVU AN LITTUU ON ALUUY RAR AN PUN SI AYU RI INTANOM DOPINIO WAR SIRI BEVEYOY RAR KAKILINGAN.


DOPINIO (PLANTING LITTUU): “SATU RI ADYONDAR AN ‘SYMBIOSIS’. MU UMAMMAI DARATYEN LITTUU, DIYOY TUT PAN-EYAVAN DAN AYU. MINABANG TU PISYA DARATYEN AYU TOY DIYOY TUT LIRUM DAN LITTUU MU TIYEHAW. POORON TU PAY RI SUWIT DI LITTUU WAR DARARE MAMOTBOTAR DARIT AYU.

“MASEROT MU MANDARAPAT AN ITANOM DI LITTUU ON AYU WAR DARI, TOY MANBALIW RAN MATUWAN EYAS, MARIN MONOCULTURE.”

Page 8
SIREDYEN MAVATAR MOT PODDA RI MAVVESAR AN PEYAR DI INTANOM NAR DARI AN LITTUU ON AYU, MANGGAYHAYAM PODDAT DOPINIO. BAYAW MADAHET RI PANGIONNAN DI URUMAR TAHU.

TREE CUTTER: “PISTI TIYEN DOPINIO... SANGKANAN TINAMNANAT AWWOY DARATYEN LUGAR? DEEM PODDAT SUWIT DA! MASAIT MOT PODDA AN MANGAYU ON MAMOTBOT SI GMELINA!”

MU URUM YA UMARUNGE PISYA ANA’ DOPINIO WAR DARI. MARAWUM BEYOYAN ANUT IRAW ON URUM TAY AN BALANG AN AYOP RI INAPYAN DI AMA RAR AN EYAS SI AYU ON LITTUU.

DOPINIO’S SMALL DAUGHTER: “PAPA DOPS, I LIKE LITTUU BUT NOT SNAKES!”

MARIN PINELET DOPINIO DARAREN DODDORAH DI ASAH-ON NAR TATAHU. INTOLTOLANG NA PASI PANKENE’ DI ANA’ NAR DARI. SI ATUTTUWANAR, LALON GIMMEYHEYA ON NANGGAYHAYA TOY DIMMEE NAADAL NAR SIREN AMAMMAI MOT TANOM NAR DARIN LITTUU OT NANLAPU RA MOT MANSAVUNG ON MAMBUNGAT DEEM PODDA.

DOPINIO: “MU MANSAVUNG LITTUU WAR, DEE ATTOH SI UMALI AN IYUAN. BAVAYI ASTA LEI AN AWWOY YA PAREHON MANSAVUNG.

“MAVVESAR PANGILAN AN NAYUTU ON DOMONA MOT BUHBUHON LITTUU WAR MU ANON MOT SI PANII ON GANDAW RI BUNGA NAR DARI.

“MANSU’NUT DIYEN MAMBUNGA LITTUU WAR DARI, DIMMEE MOT RI MANTETTEYAVAR DARI… OT MEYAPU TOY TIMMUNGNIN MOT DI LUGAR MIYAR, DIMMEE MOT PISYA NANTUVU WAR AN ORKID SI PANGAN DI AYU WAR DARI.”

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SI NAPEYAVUSAR DARIN TAW-ON, NASANTAN RI PANETTE ON PANE’SE’LAT DI TATAHU WAR DARI I DOPINIO. URYAN DA MOT TINATTATAWAN RI UGALE NAR AN MANTANTANOM SI LITTUU AN DIYOY SI ALUUY NAN SAMILYAN SI AYU. BAYAW MU MANPINGSAN, DIYOY RAT MANVALAW: SANGKANAN URYAN BOTBOTON ON ILAHON DOPINIO RI AMAMMAI YAR MOT DARIN AWWOY ON AYU NA?

VISITOR #1: “MU ILAHOM DARANYEN AYU ON AWWOY, MILYONARYO AMOT!”

VISITOR #2: “SEGURADO’ AN MARI AMOT MANPAHPAHEL SITU BAIYURAR!”

NAMBALIW AN AMUNGLAN TOURIST ATTRACTION RI TANAMAN DOPINIO WAR. WAR NAUN-UNAR DARIN INTANOM NAN LITTUU ON URUM TAY AN AWWOY YA MASEVE MOT AN 50 METROS RI ANDUOYAN DAR. DIYOY RAT BISITAS AN SINOHSOHAN DAT DOPINIO TA ILAHO NA MOT RI NEYAMSANAR DARIN AWWOY SI MANGAP-APYAR DARIT PASIKING, AYUR, PALANGKA, BUTAKA, ON URUM TAY AN PRODUKTON SI RATTAN.

BUSINESSMAN: “MASKI MAGKANO, BILHIN KO LAHAT YANTOK MO.”

DOPINIO: “MAS GUSTO KO PO MAY INAANI AKONG LITTUKO KADA AGOSTO.”

SIREDYEN NAN-EL NIÑO SIREN 1997-98, SIMMAIT DI BILAYAR SIRI LUGAR DA DOPINIO WAR. NATDUANAN DI TAYO’TO AR DARI OT NAN-ATOY RI TANOM DI TATAHUWAR. KOLANG AMPAY PANUBUH DAR TOY NAANSANAN DIYEN TIYEHAW. DIMMEE TAY PISYA RI BANGBANGAWAN ON URUMAR TAY DARIN BEYANDAH. ATDI RI NAAPYAR TOY DIYOY RAT NANLOHAV SI AS-ASUPAR DARIN BAIYUR OT TIMMAYAN RI MANTETTEYAVAR DARI.

DOPINIO: “NANUNG DIYEN EL NIÑO YA MAVVES BILAY MIYAR TOY DEET AN-ANIYON MIT NABOBOV-ONAR DARI AN TANOM MI. DIYOY RAT KUDIYAS, GISANTES, GAYYA’, KAMOTE, LEE, SAYOTE, LARA, PATATAS, PIPINO, MANI, RABANUS, ON CARROT. NATIYEHAW LOM-AN DARARE SI NILAWUSAR AN ATUNG DI TIYEMPO WAR.

“MARI BAYAW NATDUANAN LOM-AN AN PANGEY-EYAN MIT PANUBUH SI GARDEN MIYAR. BAYAW DEE AMIM PODDAN MANPUPUWES SI DANUM... ANDOHLAN URITTI’ MOT LAN NASOHSOH ESEP UWAR — URITTI’ MOT LAN INLAHO’ RI SINALSALINUWAAR DARIN AWWOY ON AYU, TA MU MAVILAY LOHOM PAMILYAAR.”

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SI MISESEYUNURAR DARIN TAW-ON, KIMMAPUY RI PIYOAR, BIMLE RI PRESYON DI LAHO WAR AN FERTILIZER ON PAMUSITSIT SI PISTI, OT LALON NA’DUMAN DI BILAY RI TATAHUWAR SIRI KAKILINGAN. BINOTBOT DI AREEYANAR TAHU RI TANOM DAR AN GMELINA OT INLAHO RA RI NALAHARI YAR MOT AN TABLA SI MANGAP-APYAR DARIT MUEBLES. URUMAR YA INAPYARAN ULING ANDEMAN AN AYU AN MARUNGPIL DA. ON DIYOY RA PAT NI’BUS SI URUMAR LUGAR AN NAMARAHOL ON NAN-CHAINSAW SI AYU WAR DARIN URYAN DAN TONA.

ILLEGAL LOGGER #1: “EH, KUMPARI, MAN-ENGAT TA… TAGA BUENAVISTA ANU RI DIRECTOR DI FORESTRY YAR. ON ESTRIKTO ANU RI BARANGAY OFFICIALS DAR SITU, PASI MEMBROS DI PEOPLE’S ORGANIZATION DAR DARI.”

ILLEGAL LOGGER #2: “HEHEHE... MARI AN MANDANAG, PARI. ‘MADE IN CHINA’ TIYE TIN-AW UWAR AN CHAINSAW. MARI ANUN ANSAN MABEVEHA RI MAKINA NAR.”

OT OSAN EHAW, HABANG MAALIVUSU AN MAMOBPROBLEMA RI URUMAR ABEVEYOYAN DOPINIO MU DATTUT PANGEYAN DAT AYU AN DISIHON DAN ITUNGU O MU APYON DAN ULING TA WEYMU DIYOY SI ILAHO RA ON MAANAPAN DAN ISALIW SI ITANOM DAN BUE, FERTILIZER, PAMUSITSIT... PASI PAMBULANG... NAESEP ISYAN DOPINIO AN MANGI-OY SIRI TINDAANAR BAMBANG SI PATAMTAM TAY LOHOM AN INANI NAR LITTUU. DUWEYA TAY LOHOM AN TIKLIS AN NAPNUT NEYAMSAN AN BUNGA RI INKARGANAR SI PATUHI NAR.

FARMER #1: “SI BI’BIHAT, UWA DOPINIO... DATTUT AYAM TA GWAPO AM PODDA BESAN?”

FARMER #2: “MEYASA A, DOPINIO, TA OMOY A PAT DI LITTUU MAR DARI. MAN-IYATU A PAY TAY A... UMALI A BAYAW TA OMOY TAN MIBULANG!”

DOPINIO: “OMOYA’ SIRI BAMBANG. DIYOY SI ASAVAYAT UN MANSALIW SI LITTUU, TA ILAHO NA ANU SIRI BAGUIO.”

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NASALIW INSEGIDA RI BEBVE YAR LAHON DOPINIO AN LITTUU. MARIN NALILLIWA, SIMMIKAT DI LITTUUNAR DARI. AMAMMAI ON MAMIS DA EYAMPAY — MARIN ATDIT NI’BUS SI URUMAR LUGAR AN MAMAN-OH ON MAESOM. DEET MANSALIW AN BISITAS DOHLAN MAHANUN MAUMPUS RI LAHONAR. SI NAUN-UNAR PODDAN PAMUHBUH DOPINIO SI LITTUUNAR, OMOY AN SIMPIYUN LIVUN PESOS RI NANLAHOWANAR. LALON GIMMEYHEYAT DOPINIO AN NANTANOM SI LITTUU.

THICK MADAM: “BUY ME MORE OF THESE, ETENG. THESE ARE THE BIGGEST AND JUICIEST LITTUU I EVER TASTED IN MY LIFE!”

LOCAL ALALAY: “YES, MADAM... I WILL BUY ONE TIKLIS. LITTUU IS INDEED VERY GOOD FOR YOUR HEART AND BEAUTY, MADAM!”

HAWAIIAN TOURIST: “LET-TOO-OH! HOW I WISH WE ALSO HAVE FRUITS LIKE THIS IN HONOLULU...!”

WHITE TOURIST: “$1?”

AFRICAN-AMERICAN TOURIST: “TYPE KO TOW!”

JAPANESE TOURIST: “RITTUKU? ARIGATO... OISHI!”

TOUR GUIDE: “YOU DON’T HAVE LITTUU IN JAPAN? TASTE IT… MAMIS PODDA!”

BALIKBAYAN #1: “MANSALIW TA... BEYAW TONA’ LOM-AN BUE NAR. IUSA MI MU MANBEVOY AMIT SONGKA ON BINGO SIRI NEW JERSEY.”

BALIKBAYAN #2: “IDDANA’ AMPLAMU URITTI’ NA? ITANOM UT LIRUM DI KATURAY ON ARUNGGAY UWAR SIRI FLORIDA.”

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INAPYAN DOPINIO WAR YA OSAN KLASEN SI AGROFORESTRY AN NANPAVVES SI BILAY RI FAMILYA NAR ON NAMPAVVES TAY SI LUGAR DAR, SIMMEROT DI DATI YAR MABOTLONG AN BAIYUR ON DIMMEE MANTETEYAVAR ON URUM TAY WILDLIFE. MEYAPU TOY URYANAN BINOTBOT DI TANOM NAR DARIN PUN SI AYU AN PAN-EYAVAN DI LITTUU NAR, NASALBAR DI BEYOY RAR SIREDYEN DIYOY SI AMMAIN LOHAV. NAMBALIW PAY MAVVES AN SANDI DARARIYEN AYU MU MANPUWO’. PLANON DOPINIO AN MANPATA’DOH SI PANLAHOWANAT BUNGA ON SAMILYAN SI LITTUU SIRI HIGHWAY TA WEYMU MARA’DANA URUMAR TAHU.

LOCAL FORESTER: “SIREDYEN UNGA’ TAY, MILU’LUUYA’ I AMA’ AN MANPASYAL SI BABAIYURAR SITU BUENAVISTA, TOY PARTEN DI TALAVAHO NAR DIYE AN COWBOY DI RANCHO WAR SITUT DIYEN POTO’. MATANDALA’ AN NAYYIR TAY PODDAN LITTUU ON ANDEMAN AN AWWOY SITUT DIYEN TIYEMPO… GIYUN ON BOTLONG LOHOM DIYOYAR. BESAN ILA YA DEE MOT SI LITTUU SITU BUENAVISTA TOY NANGUNUR MOT PISYA URUMAR TATAHU SI MAVVESAR AN INAP-APYAN APU DOPINIO.”

FARMER LEADER: “INAL-ALI ON TINATTATAWAN DAT APU DOPINIO SIREN POTO’. BESAN YA NAMBALIW MOT AN RESPETADO ON POPULAR AN FARMER-LEADER. DARARE UPLAND FARMERS SAR AN NANATTATAWAT PANTANTANOM NAR SI LITTUU ON URUM TAY AN AWWOY YA MANPATUTTURU RA MOT ISYA MU ANDIYE MAVVESAR PANALINUT AWWOY, AYU, ON URUM TAY AN TANOM DAT AGROFORESTRY RAR.”

LOCAL TEACHER: “SI UWA DOPINIO YA SIKAT MOT BESAN AN PANGIYUN SI PEOPLE’S ORGANIZATION. SI ATUTTUWANAR, SIYAT FRONTLINER MI KADA DIYOY RAT UMALIN MANVISITA ON MAN-ADAL SI CBFM PROJECTS MIYAR SITU BUENAVISTA.”

MEYAPU TOY MASEROT AN PANGUNURAN DI URUMAR TATAHU RI NANPASARAN DOPINIO WAR, NANGAPYA RI ASOSASYON DAR SI PAMPHLET. IN-ITTU RAT TU RI INNUN DOPINIO WAR AN MANALINUT AWWOY ON AYU. NI’BUS TOY NAMBALIW MOT SI DOPINIO AN EKSPERTON SI PANTANTANOM SI AWWOY, NAMPASI’NU MOT AN INIMBITA RA AN MANUTTURU SI SEMINARAR DARI. OTOY RI OSAR MASEROT AN SUTSUR NA —

DOPINIO: “NANPINGSAN AN IMMEYAVA’ SI UNTU’ DI AYU WAR TA MAMUHBUH SI ILAHO’, NILAWUS PODDA GAYHAYA AR SI SEROT ON AREEN DI NEYUTU WAR DARIN BUNGA. OT UDI, TINAMA’ AN 40 MANTUNAT 60 KILOS DI ARAM-OT DI OSAR PONGOT SI LITTUU.

“SI APTI-OYAR SUTSUR, SIREDYEN I’PAS U MOT RI LANGGOTSE YAR AN NAPNUT LITTUU, NI’NAM YE YA GINUYUR DI MARAM-OTAR AN BINUHBUH U RI MATAHPIYAWAR BATANG U. PINUM-OTA’ PODDAT NANPATANGAAR... BAYAW NILIPOT SI TONGOR UWAR RI INUSAAR AN PAGUR.

“MAVVES LOHOM TOY IMMANAMUT INSEGIDA RI OSAR ANA’ UN MARIIT...TA MU MARI, URYA’ AMTA MU DIYOYA’ TAY AN TAHU BESAN. BAYAW AMTA YU? MEYAPU TOY DIYOY DARATYEN LITTUU, NAVUS RI MARIIT UWAR SI KOLEHYO — B.S. EDUCATION!”

(NAVUS MOT)

Banih Siri Dampol

Meyapu toy man-ur-uran mot pay, naesep un iviyang tiye osar an sutsur ri deyangtoyar Dampol siri Dupax del Sur:

OSAN SUTSUR SI BANIH

Watdin poto’ ot war mampe’pen di pariyar ot osan bavayi an mandam-ot. Osan lavi, immoy nangyator di bavayiyar si pine’peyanar darin eeng. War luuy nar ot asawa nar.

Siriyen diyoy rat di konbentowar, matden podda uranar. Mi’bus toy mahah dan amoy si payawar, mari ran mahayhaya an man-awat dampolar, ineya ra sariye as-asupar an pan-awan. Umappang da, bayaw war danumar ot ammain podda.

Wa ri leiyar, mari otiyan mahayhayan man-awat di, toy amta na ta madehet. Mandeyomdom, mu war bavayiyar impoppor na.

Besan, siriyen nan-awa rat di, naanur di bavayiyar mandam-ot. Lei yar lohom si nirunan dimmatong siri beyoy ra.

Nansu’nut diyen oras an naanur diyen bavayi, dee mot si bumutbutta si atdiyon da an banih siriyo dampolar. An lavi anu ela ya mangisap-oy si inaveyar darin mapuraw.

Andoholan war tahuwar dari ot tumaut man-awat di lalo mu sariye laviyar darin man-ur-uran on mari mos masne ri buwenar, ta atdiyon di tahuwar dari ta diyoy pay anu ri banihar siriye dampolar.

Satu ri amtaar estoryan si banih.

(Satiyen sutsur ya ni’bus i ERMELINDA C. MAGALAD siriyen Oktubre 4, 1966 ot niseum si librun Ernesto Constantino war an ISINAY TEXTS AND TRANSLATIONS an naimprenta siredyen Disyembre 1982.)

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Once Upon a Pig Raiser in Isinay Land

AGAIN, MANY THANKS for the finger wound I got for chopping chayote fruits to cook as supplemental food for our dogs. Had it not been for this mishap, I would not have also remembered that once upon a time chopping and cooking food for animals, particularly pigs, was part of my boyhood life.

Yes, unlike most if not all kids in Isinay land today, when I was little, part of my activities was raising pigs -- or rather helping my mother raise some -- when piggeries were still very wise and practical things to engage in in our part of Isinay country.

Not that no one is keeping swine in Dupax anymore to augment their income. But for the few that still do, it's already an entirely different world from what we had when I was a boy.

In my mind's eye come rushing -- and competing to be discussed first -- the following images:

We used for our piggery the ground floor of our rice granary (kamalig in both Tagalog and Ilokano, eyang in Isinay). To enclose the space, Papa nailed planks of lumber that had survived termites and rats for decades and augmented them with slabs I salvaged from the then FCA Sawmill that I mentioned in a previous post to have occupied the idle land across the Dupax cemetery.

For feeding trough, Mama used her dilapidated batya that also survived my penchant then to sell scrap metals, used bottles, and old kaserolas to the man from Malasin (or Bambang?) who went around Dupax occasionally carrying an assiw with a tiklis on each end and shouting "botte landuuukkk!"

We fed our pigs mostly with rice bran (duhi in Isinay, tuyo in Ilokano, darak in Tagalog). We sourced the rice bran from the rice mill (kiskisan in both Ilokano and Isinay) of the Mercado-Lim family whose operator was Ama Norio Salirungan who older guys called Utlo^ (Isinay for young leaves).

To make the rice bran more palatable, we had several menus to prepare it. Depending on their availability, we had a repertoire of rice bran cum green papayas, gabi runners (daludal in Ilokano and Isinay), kangkong leaves, galyang stalks, and the seasonal herb Amorphophallus campanulatus (stink herb in English, tigi in Ilokano, imbayang in Isinay, pongapong in Tagalog).

We sourced the supplemental feed mostly from my grandparents' bangkag (farm) in I-iyo and Langka. We got the kangkong and daludal from our solar near Pitang which often had water -- plus mudfish and tadpoles -- in its swampy lower part. For the imbayang, I had good exercise outdoors and special treats of such edibles as mangoes, guavas, anonas, and sapang while looking for them among the thickets in Pitang and Abuwew.

Cooking the items into what they call binugbog in Ilokano and seyor in Isinay was itself fun. It included chopping the organic veggies and in the process getting awed at the star-shaped cross-sections of the papaya, and occasionally enjoying a half-ripe fruit for my lonesome. The task also included building a fire in the side stove meant for cooking the feed items -- and in the process get an excuse to delegate taking care of baby sisters on weekends so I could go gather more firewood (itungu in Isinay, pagsungrod in Ilokano, panggatong in Tagalog).

Firewood was at the time plenty and free in the wilderness areas close to home. Among my foraging spots were Pitang, Gabaldon, and Abuwew near our house in Domang, but occasionally I went with my cousin Nelson Castro and neighbor Jude Calacala to the Reyes area near the cemetery and as far as the Dupax Subsidiary Nursery. (Sorry for the antsoan dilaw, gubas and other refo species we pilfered in the Nursery, but Nelson and I had no inkling we would become foresters then.)

Some more memories...

It was part of my chores even when I was already in high school to feed the pigs, clean their pen, and to splash water on them especially when the weather is hot. I recall I had a favorite black male that I named Arob-ob-ob that we subjected to castration by Inang Feliza (she used sharpened bamboo called bulo in Ilokano, uhaw in Isinay, boho in Tagalog). During feeding time, I would scratch the back of this pet and it would stop feeding and would arch its back to enjoy my rubbing.

I also recall that we once had a wild pig (bavuy si eyas in Isinay, baboy ramo in Tagalog, babuy ilahas in Bisaya, alingo in Ilokano) among our pets. I had the luck of catching the fellow one time I joined Mama in helping weed my grandparents' upland rice farm in Langka. It was only the size of a cat then and one of the weeders was about to shoot it with his shotgun when we heard it grunt among the rice plants. But when I called "piiigg!" to it, the piglet came to me. It was tame and had a rope on its neck -- indicating that it had an owner. Since no one lived nearby, we presumed the piglet got lost and so I took it home in Domang. It must have tremendously missed feeding on wild tubers and fruits in the wilderness because it didn't get fat with the guavas, kamote tops, rice bran and binugbog that I pampered it with. For many months, it grew to a size not bigger than a small dog.

As for the other pigs, when a sow would get "in heat" (mammaya in Isinay, agmaya in Ilokano, naglalandi in Tagalog), Mama and I would bring it to be impregnated by the gigantic Duroc White Jersey bull at the Dupax Cooperative piggery at Balzain. Picture this: a scrawny boy would pull the rope tied to the neck of the pig while his mom would goad the pig to walk faster with a stick. The Isinay term for this pig-escorting activity is dundunon.

At the time, we referred to Balzain as Dereya and the piggery was managed by Uwa Bilyong Bastero. I recall a story went around that when they were clearing the ground for its construction, it was Father Gilbert van Huisseling who took up the cudgels of felling the gigantic tree there.

Isinays called the tree tatawwa then and it was believed to be haunted. It was only when I was already taking up Dendrology at the UPLB College of Forestry that I came to know the tree's scientific name to be Sterculia foetida (bangar in Ilokano, kalumpang in Tagalog, wild almond in English).

What happens when the sow gave birth? Mama and I would of course be very happy because the litter meant fruits of our labor. We distributed some females to friends for a pig-raising and co-ownership system they call paiwi in Tagalog. The system calls for the raiser to share half of the litter when the sow gives birth for the first time, then return the sow when it gives birth for the second time. I don't recall if this system had ever been profitable for my mother.

Oh yes, we never had our pigs butchered; we instead sold a grown up one for a hundred pesos or so to a slow-moving truck that occasionally visited our part of Dupax and whose buyers shouted "babuyyyy!" for all pig raisers in the neighborhood to hear.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

A 55-Year-Old Wound Remembered

THE SECOND thing that I remembered when I was nursing the wound I described in the post immediately before this was that I had a similar blood-letting about 55 or so years ago.

I should remember, because the record pain and the amount of blood generated by that wound were only surpassed when I had "a purposive kind of wounding" called circumcision.

Oh well, the memory of that earlier wound stood up as if to say "I'm still here!" because, by some strange coincidence, the wound I had a few days ago was only half a centimeter away from the one that I had when I was eight.

By coincidence, too, the old wound was also accidentally self-inflicted when the bolo I was using went wayward, sliced off about a centimeter of epidermis and some millimeters of flesh in my left index finger, and before I knew it, blood was spurting -- repeat, spurting -- and not oozing.

I purposely paused to make a digital photo of my "lucky" finger while writing this and posted the resulting picture on the right to drive home my point. Note that my current wound is beside the nail (uu in Isinay, kuko in Iloko) of my tannuru, while the scar (pi^lat in Isinay, piglat in Iloko) which I colored red for emphasis is on the pinching or lower side of the finger.
The fresh wound is in green while the scar is marked red.

To complete the story, the accident happened while I was making the first of four wooden wheels intended for a tartarak (toy truck) that I envisioned to be a work of art when completed.

At first I thought the wound was superficial. And, yes, I thought the pain and the bleeding would stop as soon as I chewed young guava leaves and spat the medicine on the wound.

As fate would have it, I got scared of my spurting and bloody finger. Thus, even if anyone of the several guava trees that formed part of our backyard way back then was easily within my chewing reach, I ran to my mother instead.

My mom was as usual busy with a dress in her Singer sewing machine then. But when she saw me sidle up beside her and sobbing, she stopped her sewing and tremblingly asked what happened.

I didn't answer and just firmly pressed my thumb on my injured finger inside my short-pants' front pocket.

Mama must have seen patches of blood on my short pants and got highly alarmed herself. So, pretty soon she was shouting expletives in Ilokano and pried out my left hand from my short pants.

To cut the story, my mother ran to her small medicine cabinet in the big room upstairs, and in a few moments, she applied plaster and sulfanilamide powder on my finger.

The medicine gave a stinging pain when Mama sprinkled it on my wound. But I was so relieved to see the blood stop coming out that I kept the hurt puppy inside me from making ayuwong (Isinay for wailing).


NOW TO GO back to the project that caused it all.

The raw material I used was a slab that was part of my mangayu (firewood gathering) outputs. It was part of my haul of firewood material that I gathered with the use of the then common multipurpose jute sack (called langgotse in Isinay, langgosti in Iloko) either as scrapwood container or as shoulder cushion for hauling longer pieces of throw-away lumber from the sawmill (which used to occupy a huge patch of land across the road from where the Iglesia ni Cristo church now stands in Barangay Sta. Maria, Dupax del Sur) to our home in Domang.

I had no knowledge then of the names and qualities of the timber (said to be mostly dipterocarps) logged from the bluish eastern mountains of Dupax. But I chose that slab for its hardness, the resulting wheels of which would be durable or at least last much longer than the wheels of the truck earlier made by my teacher father purposely to facilitate my firewood gathering.

My father must have sensed that whenever I would not go to Palabotan (called I-iyo when I was young) on weekends or during school breaks, I would join the Calacala brothers Junior and Oret plus other Isinay boys in our neighborhood in Domang to go rummage for fuelwood material from among the mountains of sawdust, trimmings, edgings, log barks, and other sawmilling wastes dumped in the area across the Dupax cemetery.

He must have realized that aside from the itch and bruises one would often get from hauling the slabs and trimmings from the sawmill dump, gathering sawmill waste was not always fun. Thus, Papa must have put heart and soul in fashioning that truck to make my chore somewhat lighter.

But I only got to use Papa's "truck" for its intended purpose of hauling firewood twice. For one thing, its wooden and wiggly wheels were not of much help in taking heavy loads over the one-kilometer distance between the sawmill and our house in Domang.

What broke the camel's back, however, was the truck's artless features -- rubberless wheels, unpainted body, and un-truck-like appearance. I felt uncomfortable pulling it in the company of the Calacala brothers who were prone to despise (al-aliyon in Isinay, uyawen in Iloko) my equipment because their mini versions of logging trucks did not only look handsome in their green metallic hoods complete with tansan (bottle caps) for headlights but were also sturdy, had six rubber-lined wheels, and could haul even a cavan of rice.

Anyway, thank you, Papa, for giving it a try. At least for some joyful moments, I employed your masterpiece to babysit my much younger sisters then -- Merlie 5, Tessie 3&1/2, and Judith 2 -- when we still had that grassy roadside as children's playground in our part of Dupax. 

Question: Whatever happened to my dream truck?

Well, I don't recall having finished even one wheel. But at least the accident gave me days of respite from such household chores then as feeding the pigs, sweeping dung from the poultry, and hauling firewood.

Moreover, the accident it brought has taught me to be extra careful when using sharp objects -- a lesson that I think I have kept in mind since 1960... until recently.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Guava Leaves as Medicine for Wounds

FUNNY HOW a small wound is able to resurrect buried memories of childhood.

The other day I was cutting sayote fruits into chunks preparatory to cooking as sort of viand (in-asuh in Isinay, dinengdeng or inabraw in Iloko) for my three dogs when my bolo (ota^ in Isinay, buneng in Iloko) slid off the tough skin of the veggie fruit and went straight to carve a C-shaped incision on my left index finger (tannuru in Isinay, tammudo in Iloko).

As I was pressing my thumb (am-ama in Isinay, tangan in Iloko) to the wound which I read somewhere a long time ago is a first-aid technique to stop the bleeding and to make the wound close quickly, three sets of memories came racing (nanlolomba in Isinay, nagiinnuna in Iloko) in my mind.


For the sake of brevity, I shall focus first on one of the recollections dusted, if we may use the term, by the finger wound and follow this up later with separate posts on the two.

Indeed, as the title of this piece suggests, guava leaves (dawun si bayyawas in Isinay, bulong ti bayyabas in Iloko) are not only possible but powerful medicines for wounds among Isinays as well as, I guess, among Ilocanos and other "races" that have access to guava trees.

That's my wounded tannuru pointing at the guava medicine.
Like most other outdoor-loving kids in Dupax, as a boy I was also not immune to getting wounded (masuhat in Isinay, masugatan in Iloko). In fact, my most "victimized" body part then were my feet, quite often because I was not looking where I was stepping as my eyes focused on the bird (mantetteyav in Isinay, billit or tumatayab in Iloko) I was sniping among the spiny brush, in the bamboo clumps, or under the mango trees.

I digress, but in case you would ask why I was often barefoot, let me just say that it was not yet in fashion then, especially in the barrio, to wear sandals. You see, we barrio (sitio) folks in I-iyo back then -- and even in the central part of Dupax -- were really simple and frugal barefooted people. If ever we had sandals, shoes, slippers, or any semblance of footwear then, they were only meant for school or for church or when one was a wedding sponsor.
 
The wooden clog they call bakya in Tagalog (kuekos in Isinay, suikos in Iloko) were the "in" thing then and I remember Inang Feliza, my maternal grandmother, buy me a pair once -- the transparent plastic part of which were painted with flowers and the wooden sole carved with whatever. But I could not run around with such cumbersome clogs, nor could I go after the birds without making a noise with them wooden things.

Besides, as no day passed by without me playing in the river (wangwang in Isinay, karayan in Iloko) or in the banawang (body of water created as diversion path for irrigation water from the river to the ricefields), there was always the risk of losing either of the pair of bakya to the water. I could not wear the bakya either when I went to fetch the carabao (nuwwang in Isinay, nuang in Iloko) from its tether in the hills or in the newly harvested ricefield and ride it down to soak in the banawang or the river.

Naturally the wounds I would get were caused by stepping on a protruding bamboo peg or a sharp stone. But occasionally I would scrape my knees when I would stumble (mirumo^ in Isinay, maipakleb in Iloko) when running from an unfriendly bull in my grandfather's pasto (pasture land for cattle) or when shooing away chickens that are getting more than their share of the biit (upland rice) being sun-dried preparatory to storage in the rice granary (eyang in Isinay, sarusar or kamalig in Iloko).

Lucky for me and my similarly hyperkinetic playmates, there were always guava trees or saplings nearby where we could freely go and pluck young leaves for our injuries. We would chew a leaf or two to form a poultice and later apply the guava-cum-saliva mixture to our wound. Sometimes we were careless or didn't mind if the leaves had black ants on them.

The wound or wounds would almost always stop oozing blood. But when they didn't heal during the first treatment, we would get as many leaves as the pockets of our khaki short-pants could accommodate and bring them home to pound in the small mortar (pamo^bo-an in Isinay, almiris in Iloko) meant for crushing such cooking ingredients as ginger and black pepper, then apply the powdered leaves. Alternatively, we would boil the leaves till the water gains a tea-like color, and use the solution to wash the wound.

I wonder if today the kids in Dupax and elsewhere still resort to this guava cure. I wonder, too, if there are still guavas in their neighborhood and, if there are any that have escaped conversion into charcoal, if the kids or even their parents are still able to identify which one is a guava from other trees in their now congested and nature-starved world!