“Green, green grass of Home”

Dodo-an, Monamon Sur, Bauko, Mountain Province

About 2 and half years ago in Manila, I was sitting in a coffee shop where I embraced the longing of solitude since it’s annoying to be in a crowd sometimes. While I was there, it’s unavoidable to feel like a loser being alone so what I did was to bring out my phone, pretended to have typed a very long message to nobody (in its place after was at the draft box).  Sure as fire that was odd. Yet, said another way, I befriended myself, took out my earphones, turned the volume on, made-believe I was the only creature on earth, loved the moment and that delightful cup of coffee. And yet, never did I close my eyes, it’s fictional that way. I’m sure it is.

While I had that perfect moment to caress with, suddenly a hair-dyed and attractive on her 24-year-old looking lady came within my reach and disturbed my blissful isolation. She sat on a seat opposite mine. I thought I went through a few and far between stuffs exchanging conversation with her when finally she asked this:  Of so many places to live in, why at the mountain?” Sorry, but I cannot deny the fact that my face turned into its reddish context. I really wanted to answer her back like “Why are you wearing pajamas during a cocktail party?” But I realized it’s definitely gobbledygook. 

It’s hilarious that at times, what’s annoying is not a noise but the difference of opinion that’s wrongly thrown. Seriously, that single line from that beautiful lady was deafening. I could not even take it as a question, rather sarcasm and ignorance. 

Don’t get me off beam. I don’t have any hitches being called a mountain girl ‘coz I lived almost my whole life in this kind of atmosphere and if I were to summarize that lifespan in a word? It’s AMAZING! 

Naturally our birthplace is located out of people’s sight like a hidden habitation where we can only find comfort, tranquil and peace. No single person for us is unknown and yes, we are aware that we’re isolated from the rest of mankind. Foods are everywhere because we are farmers; roads are on its roughest of the roughest, children walk miles of mountain to reach school, people typically use mountain boots instead of shoes, and people commonly go out of town to sell vegetables not to have vacation. Parents do not have the latest technologies but certainly they’re pleased that they may be able to invest for their children’s education. Sometimes, however, most of us might be uneducated but not ignorant, poor but we’re at peace and gratified.  

I say, we are mountaineers but the spirit of surviving is rooted within our veins. We adopted on our surrounding thus nature hugged us back. Indeed, we are blissful this way. 

“Monamon” is located in Bauko, Mountain Province. Not that much to talk about but I just want to simply share some of its features that made me fall in love with over and over again.     

River of Clouds 

Talk about waking up early in the morning, seeing heavy clouds enveloping hills and valleys. And if you were ever on mountain peaks, you can perfectly perceive them like a river of clouds mounting upwards. Or more to it, portraying as a likeness of soft cottony white. Its stillness is attracting me to go and lay on it, if possible. 

Green, Green Grass of Home

Definitely this is the 1960’s song of Tom Jones which I repeatedly hearing when I was in grade school. Thus when I was in Bontoc (My father’s hometown), I usually tell my Mama in a singing way: Let’s go to our green, green grass of Home Monamon since the place is very green. I hope you can imagine. 

Almost Zero Visibility

The thickness of fog leads us not to quite see people we meet along the way. That’s the reason when we almost bump into someone, we simply utter “Ay sika baw sa ya” (Oh it’s you.) However than not, it is wonderful to see people’s pinkish cheeks when they go someplace because the sun barely shines upon them. 

Sound of the Wind 

Precisely, we dwell in a subzero place. It’s a must to go forward-facing inglenook before going to bed otherwise you’ll sleep with your folded legs. Plus never will one night passes without you listening to the breeze. 

Going back to that conversation, I just answered her “The Mountain you see is what I call HOME.” I reached for my bag, walked away and never looked back. 


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