Small worlds

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Saturday, January 12, 2013


IT IS a deliciously chilly evening in December, 2012. A group of people are in a hall atop one of several school buildings. The chill is pronounced because the hall’s windows are unpaned, open to the wind and Christmas air. I am among those gathered at the hall to witness a graduation at Baguio’s own, homegrown Small World Christian School Foundation. We are actually in the top floor basketball court, dressed up for the occasion.

There are 40 graduates moving up from high school – 20 girls and 20 boys -- as the video shows us all who are there. One of the girls is a niece, Stella Marie Capule. Two of the boys are nephews. Their mothers, after the graduation ceremony, go about fussing and clucking as they see to dinner being served. As they do so, Chase’s dad, cuz Bobby Carantes, and his band belt out a couple of songs. Bobby is, of course, one of Baguio’s own original rock band, Bag-iw.

It’s a small world.

Small World’s boss, Imelda Casuga, is also Imelda Sta. Cruz, and we are classmates a long time ago in a Maryknoll Convent School, where the wind blows into our school auditorium with the Christmas air as we hold our Christmas shows. We are schoolmates again at the UP Diliman, and both become educators after college.

Actually, I know that Imelda first teaches in Brent Baguio. And then I hear that she has her own little school going on. I hear this because one or two of Sylvia and Emil Ruff’s children go there. Sylvia says that the reason Imelda could handle her Little Emil is because she had been classmates with the other Emil in Maryknoll. Yes, it's a samll world.

In the 80s, Imelda sets up shop on Military Cut Off, and my own Kublai graduates from her Small World School when it is yet there. He graduates from grade school in 1996 with his best friend Jeremy Hiadan, Abby Rood, his friend since they were babies and whose parents are my friends and colleagues, Ira Lamar, son of yet another of my and Imelda's Maryknoll classmates, and more of a handful of children schooled to be good Christians. (to be continued)

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on January 12, 2013.

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