Entry for September 02, 2008 – Ako Ay Pilipino

2 09 2008

Are you back for more?

Of course you are, otherwise you would stop reading right now.

So don’t just sit there… don’t stop… read on…

Welcome (back) to Japs Land.

If you haven’t read the last post, I strongly suggest that you exit this one & go back to that one first–(Filipino Gathering), for this is kind of a Part Two of that.

But if you are like most people I know who read the back page of the newspaper first, or those who read the last chapter of a novel first, or those who just do not follow directions, then by all means read on…

Otherwise be a good citizen & a good person & read the last blog post first & come back over here, no worries I’ll be here, promise…

Well at least this post will be here, I will most probably be out somewhere as I only have a few minutes to type this up on the fly & fly away afterwards…

Anyway, as I was saying the last time, the night wasn’t finished yet.

After the Service we all did a convoy & went to someone’s house for dinner & refreshments.

And we ended up going to a two storey house within a quiet neighborhood.

When we got there there were already people standing around on the sidewalk fronting the house, in the driveway & inside the garage.

There are more people in the front porch (eating & drinking) & there are people in living room as we went in. There are of course a lot of people in the dining room, the back yard, even in the corridors, in the restrooms & in the bedrooms.

All in all I estimate the total number of people was close to 300 maybe even more, still 99% of Filipino descent.

Yes a full blown Filipino gathering.

As everyone was hungry by this time, people started lining up at the buffet table, which is usually the star of any Pinoy gathering, well some started at the dessert table, filled with kakanin & other Filipino treats so I don’t blame them, & some went directly to where the food were coming from before it was being served–wise.

So as we were again a bit late in coming to this house we were stuck in line for a long time. And some of the early birds were already drinking their beer & what nots, the kids were playing rock band on wii, taking turns as to who would sing, who would play the drums & who would play the two guitars, I am assuming one was bass & one was lead, who knows I haven’t bought this game yet but after watching these kids, I will surely buy the game & at least the mic, the drum set & one guitar.

Anyway, we ate until we have the food coming out of our ears. Everything was delicious, I would have wanted to list the menu in here but I stopped myself as I am beginning to become hungry again & it is past midnight over here & I might end up raiding the fridge. Which I will most probably will after I stopped typing this.

And so after eating, we still had to get dessert. And after dessert, we had to eat monggo soup which was piping hot. And we also had to taste the scalding arroz caldo. And lastly out came the humongous casserole of lomi soup.

There were still more coming out but we had to move out of the dining area if we are to keep some sense of sanity. And so we moved to the porch were there were people drinking. We went to the garage & the kids are still at it with wii rock band and a few adults drinking & eating any of the hot soups, singing & playing a real guitar.

We then went back to the main living room, where there was initially somebody playing the piano but now somebody was singing along.

And if you know anything about Filipinos, you know that they can not only talk for hours on end, they can also sing for hours on end. And thus we ended up sitting on one of the sofas listening to the piano & the singer & also singing along ourselves.

We sang ballads, love songs, country-western songs, rock songs, English songs, Tagalog songs, songs from the 60s & the 70s, even Christmas songs, as these are probably the songs that they have the piano sheet music to, or whatever they call those books with musical notes on them.

And this young girl played on & on & on, & we sang & sang & sang. And more & more people started joining in as we sang songs from all the great singers of the past, such as the Beatles, Peter Paul and Mary, Journey, Barry Manilow, Billy Joel, Engelbert Humperdick, Ric Segreto, Nonoy Zuniga, Rey Valera, Sharon Cuneta, Joey Albert, Kuh Ledesma, Ogie Alcasid, APO Hiking Society, songs from the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s & 2000s. And even this one Tagalog song with the title “Ako Ay Pilipino”.

And when the pianist hands grew tired from playing, another one was forced to take her place. And when the young man quit, somebody brought in the guitar from the outside played that one instead. After that another youth played. And shortly that person also quit. Now most of the people that were singing outside were also in the living room along with some that came from the dining room.

And then this older gentleman took over, and now we really sang, up til close to 2 in the morning. If we did not stood up to leave, nobody was going to leave. All of them know each other fairly well, so most of them were probably just being polite & not wanting to leave before we did.

But this man was good, He played the guitar like a “tambay” who played in a street corner back home. Playing a tune, singing it changing it to another song, asking for request but playing a completely different song. Getting a song title but playing a different song whose title has one word from the original song title. Many times not able to finish a song, but just doing a medley of songs, playing a song from the 60s then to the 70s, back to the 60s & one from the 80s or 90s. English or Tagalog it doesn’t matter. Somebody would know the song lyrics & jump in, if nobody knew, people would just make up their own lyrics or hum. People from all age groups were singing…

It was a gloriously joyful gathering. And it was supposed to be a wake.

But
what else is new. We are Filipinos

Yes, we are Pilipinos, once a Filipino always a Filipino even if we have been living abroad for years, yes even in Japs’ Land.


Ako ay Pilipino – Madrigal Singers


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