A Valentine love story-A A +A
By Max Sangil
Thursday, February 14, 2013
“IT'S not the lips, but the memory of lips.” It is a quote from Greg Brilliantes, a noted essayist and literary writer of the then Philippine Free Press magazine. It simply means that anyone of us who experienced falling in love will love to remember the good and bad memories of those romantic moments, more than when we were at it.
It was in the mid-60s, I dropped out from my studies at the College of Philosophy and Letters at the University of Sto. Tomas. I settled in Angeles City and was hunting for some business opportunities. Lucky enough, I found partners in putting up an advertising shop that did neon signs, billboards and the like. At first it was giving us a nice profit, but not for long. A friend, Marino Guiao, a karate instructor who was married to Beth, a beauty from Zamboanga Del Sur, invited me to go with them and look for opportunities in Mindanao.
To cut details, we were able to put up Beaux Brotherhood Kyokosin Kai, a karate club in Zamboanga City. We rented a spacious space for our dojo (gym) on the third floor of a building owned by a rich Chinese merchant and managed by the eldest daughter who was yet a second year accountancy student at the Zamboanga AE College.
Aurora was her name. Later when we got acquainted I called her Eng. Her face was apple-shaped, her chinky eyes were so soulful, and her mestiza complexion was so evident from her head to her toes. In all my young adult life I never appreciated such a beauty. But my admiration, I kept it to myself. She was a ravishing beauty at 19. And Cupid was about to release from his bow the arrow that will pierce my heart.
And Cupid did it in a charity ward of Brent Hospital along the Cawa Cawa beach. I met an accident in a sparring against an American brown belter and was taken to the hospital unconsciously. And every single day at the hospital, Aurora visited me, brought fruits, made my bed and we talked for hours.
After a week I was released from the hospital, and one evening we were chatting on the balcony of our rented dojo when suddenly there was a brownout and all the lights in the building went out. On impulse I held her head and drew it close to mine and kissed her lips. She didn't resist. Even if it was so dark, I saw a glow in her face while my heart was incessantly making thuds. I felt that very moment how nice it was to be in love. I looked above the sky and saw billions of stars twinkling and as if I saw a lady in the face of the moon smiling at us. Ah, LOVE!
As if it was in a telenovela, her parents somehow discovered our love affair and they were vehemently against it. I was viewed as someone from nowhere, a 'soldier of fortune' who is not fit to be involved with their daughter. We were threatened to be ejected from the building, and they prohibited her to meet with me, and daily was escorted to school and elsewhere by her younger brother Manuel. I decided to leave Zamboanga and go back to Angeles City.
(To be continued on Thursday)
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on February 14, 2013.