Right around May
Some think Christmas or New Year; but for me, the year always pivots right around the month of May.
And we might have only two seasons here. One being summer, the other being, not summer.
May is and has always been for me the best month of the year; May being the peak of summer. But it might simply be that I have been a teacher for so long that I think this way.
The school year once began in June.
It begins for us now in August.
The school year ends right around May. And then the summer begins.
And what to do in the summer?
The question itself is elemental.
That you can ask the question at all tells you how different summer is from the rest of the year.
And then, you think of wonderful endless ennui, long hot summer days, and you have nothing much to do.
Write that book.
Learn to play piano.
What about dance lessons?
Summer is different that way
This is the month of endless possibilities.
Cebu is the perfect place to discover the best of them. Consider the long road trip. Cover Cebu and Bohol islands in a single long weekend.
May is fiesta month all over the Bohol Island.
Consider doing this with friends and by motorcycle.
And still, all over the islands, they will have something called Flores de Mayo.
It is a traditional religious practice of offering flowers in church for the daily mass.
I remember doing this as a child. We dressed like angels wearing paper wings as we marched with flowers to the altar.
But this was only half the fun if you lived or spent your summers here in the rural areas.
The other half was hiking all over the hills searching for flowers, which the children did before the mass began. And now I wonder, Do children still do that?
Its easy enough to find out. Summer is the best time to rediscover one’s roots.
Explore municipal towns. Find out what the town’s main products are or what happened to it during the war. Each town has its own history, its own ghosts, its own mythologies.
There are towns here whose tradition of pastries may be traced all the way to Spanish times.
Either yolks or egg white was mixed in with the concrete to hold together the walls of Spanish churches.
They did not use yolks and egg white together as this would cause the concrete mix to rot and smell.
Thus, the other half of the eggs were made into pastries. Broas and Rosquillos are my favourites. But nothing quite tugs at me like a memory of polvoron.
I grew up as a child in Dumanjug in the end years of the 1950s.
They still sold U.S. Army goods in some stores in the city.
I still remember my father bringing home huge boxes of powdered milk and butter.
The labels always had a pair of hands shaking each other in that old expression of undying imperialist friendship such as describes certain markers of our history: A gift from the people of the United States to the people of the Philippines. Reparation goods for so much destruction and death in a war that was not at all ours.
For my late mother: Mix powdered milk, sugar, and butter, in a large wok.
Fold with a wooden baking spoon over low heat. Shape into a mould.
Allow to cool and set.
Wrap in coloured Japanese paper.
The merry month of May.
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.