Friday, January 24, 2014

Shoutout to Dad: Happy 85

"I just fed the turkeys, the geese and the chickens this morning. They keep following me wherever I go, asking for more food. The are like soldiers marching, making a lot of noise, honking. I look forward to seeing you again this afternoon. I miss you all, so with your sister. I miss your Lola very much. How I wish you are all here with me. Perhaps this summer, Kimi. - last diary entry written by Dr.Enrique Lolarga Jr. from a farm in Pangasinan, dated Jan. 2, 1992, and addressed to his eldest granddaughter Kimi. Dad died 10 days later.

Among Dad's classmates in medical school, they had a tradition of contracting one another's surnames and turning them into their nicknames (e.g., Bascara became Basky; Lolarga became Loly). Somewhere along the way, Loly was how Enrique Lolarga Jr. also became known to his in-laws. Junior was what his parents and siblings called him. Loly became father to eight kids. Loly expanded to the Lollikins to include Mom, my siblings and I, our spouses, our children and now our own grandchildren.

Dad and Mom flank their five grandchildren. This is dated 1987 judging by how young that kid in the baby carrier is. The last three apo, Sara, Christian and Bianca, were born after Dad departed. The kyootie patooties in this photo provided by my sister Embeng are arranged according to age (from eldest to youngest): Carlo, Paolo, Kimi, Marga and Ida.

We're missing brother Junic here in our near-complete family portrait (he took the picture) and the three sons-in-law of Dr. Lolarga (Rolly Fernandez, Obet Trinidad and Rod Susi, also acknowledged according to age). Today we say to you, Dad: Mabuhay ka! At mabuhay din ang mga Lollikins!
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