Aside from my father, another person whom I always missed and very dear to me is my grandfather in my mother’s side. My Lolo (Filipino term for grandpa) was almost 90 years old when he died more than a decade ago. I was very closed to him like a father since my dad passed away when I was only 8. I have a lot of good memories with my Lolo than with my Dad. My Lolo lived in the nearby province of Pampanga where my mom grew up.
I remembered when I was a child, we never skipped on visiting my grandparents every summer and Christmas vacation and in some special occasions. I really loved being there because Lolo was very fond of me and my siblings. He’s a farmer and owned a farm planted with rice, corn, sweet potato, sugar cane and different vegetables. He also raised farm animals like carabaos, goats, pigs, cows, chickens and ducks. There’s a nipa house in his farm where mango and guava trees are planted around. Lolo always took us to his farm and taught us how to harvest crops and to get milk from his carabaos and cows. We always spend the whole day in his farm almost everyday of our vacation.
I never had a dull moment spending my vacation with my Lolo, not until my Lola (grandmother) passed away. Since then, he became less energetic and not as happy as before because he lost his love of his life. He stopped farming and sold his farm. He lived with my aunt and cousin but I knew he’s still feel lonely because he missed Lola so much. That time, I was already in high school and we became busy so we seldom visit Lolo. But we made sure that in special occasion like Christmas and his birthday, we always there. I saw how happy Lolo was whenever we, his grandchildren visited him, and I saw him teary-eyed everytime we prepared to leave.
Later on, Lolo became sick and weak. So my mom decided to take him to live with us. I was very happy when I found out that he’ll be living with us. Since then, we became closer as ever. He’s alive and happy again. He had many stories to us that he never told before, like how he met grandma, about my mom’s life when she’s still young and even his experienced during Japanese invasion. Though he repeats that same stories almost everyday, it didn’t matter to me as long as he’s happy being with us.
He always remind me to be a good person and a good daughter for me to have a good life. I loved hearing his advises and lessons about life. I never forget everytime he asked me to buy his favorite menthol candy, and so I always did. He’s smile was priceless whenever I handed him a pack of his favorite candy, giving me a sweet kiss on my cheek saying I’m his favorite grandchild. But he always did and told the same thing to my other siblings. He’s a total sweet and loving Lolo.
As the years passes by, he was diagnosed with prostate disease that made him weaker especially with his old age and became bed ridden. Unfortunately, I was working abroad when he left this world. I was very heartbroken to not be able to be with him and see him for the last time because I failed to go home due to some unavoidable reasons. I’ll never forget him and I was glad that I have full of happy memories with him. I’m so grateful having a kind, great and loving grandpa once in my life.