Monday, October 27, 2014

Interrupted walk

My three-year-old walking companion, a.k.a. The Wee One, and I often pause at this spot and try to be very still. It's where the butterflies from the neighborhood gather, without fail, on sunny mornings.

A week went by without a post, and I shan't detail what went on before--too inconsequential for my precious few readers to bother. They're better listed down in a private journal.

If my walks have been temporarily halted along with the photo documentation, it's because of a sudden flareup of rashes around my neck and upper chest. I felt the itch climb up, tiny rosary beads caused a swelling on my right cheek. The lid of my right eye grew heavy from the swelling. Nope, it wasn't something I ate. There's an animistic, less empirical side of me that failed to acknowledge some spirits dwelling on unused stone steps with heavy, untrimmed vegetation and flora along both sides. I chose to take that path less well taken and paid heavily for it. The Wee One was somehow protected by her fleet feet and the insect repellent lotion that her grandaunt rubbed on her exposed skin before we ventured out.

"Tabi tabi po. Makikiraan po." These are the traditional words that I should have spoken out loud as I climbed down those steps. The Wee One was light on her feet and took the steps quickly without a pause even if I tried to sound stern with my "Carefully! Carefully!" The experience has taught me to be more careful and mindful. At the same time, I'm grateful she was spared the discomfort.

I know better now. I won't dampen our combined spirit of exploration, but we'll be both armed next time with protected skin, prayers and our ancestors' incantations. These will save me another trip to the doctor and three days spent indoors waiting for the rashes to disappear with help from antihistamines. Meanwhile, I continue to just breathe.

Because of her size (she's closer to the earth), The Wee One is the first to always catch a spectacle. Then she issues a command: "Look, Booboo! Isn't that beautiful? Take a picture!"

My fearless guide to Life Photos by Booboo Babeth

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