Friday, April 30, 2010

Claiming the Right to Change my Mind

I never liked the rain. It makes me melancholic and sad and makes going around the city a big hassle for carless people like me. Rain makes cab drivers greedier than they already are, and won't take on passengers that will take them more than 5 minutes to drive. Water on dust makes mud, and that mud would eventually find my way into my clothes. I don't know how, but they somehow do. Sometimes, if I'm really unlucky, I get splashed by speeding vehicles. My blood pressure shoots up to Alert Level: Murderous when that happens, especially if I'm wearing something white or I don't have anything on me to wipe off the murky water that's making my mascara run. One time, I even picked up a stone to throw at the car that splashed me, but a friend intervened.

When Ondoy happened, I felt that my dislike for the rain was justified. Because really, who could forget the wrath of that storm that left thousands of people homeless and wet? I always said that I'd rather be hot than shivering and dripping. The memory of that horrible night in Mt. Pulag was still vivid in my mind, so vivid that if I closed my eyes I could still remember how I fervently wished to be dead.

For the past couple of months the temperature continued to climb up, leaving us all icky and sweaty and a little crabbier than usual. Closing my eyes to remember the 6 degrees and wet night at that mountain was proving to be more and more difficult every time I tried, especially when the electric fan blows hair dryer air at my sweat-soaked back.

Last night it finally rained on my part of the city. The rain traveled slowly, hitting the south in the afternoon, Ortigas in the early evening, and the north near midnight. Hours before the actual rain the air smelled like it - clean, fresh and somehow welcome. The day before that we hit the record high of 37.3C, and I was afraid if that continued people's heads would start exploding - our brains would swell so much our skulls couldn't hold it in any longer. Although it can cut down the population, I don't think there would be enough people left willing to clean out shattered craniums and smashed medulla oblongatas.

The rains continued earlier today, a little stronger this time, bringing with it some thunder and cool breeze. I actually turned down the fan because I was getting cold, but I wanted to soak up the cold so I didn't wear my Christmas pajamas. I had to go out, so I brought an umbrella but didn't use it. For the first time in my life, I willingly went out in the middle of a rainshower and actually enjoyed it. I even got splashed with muddy water on my arms, but I just calmly and quietly said "motherfucker" and got out a hankie to wipe it off.

See, people can change.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pseudo Parenting

Lately I have taken to hanging around my sister's house for days at a time, mainly because the heat is more bearable at their living room where I camp out when I'm there. In my own apartment it's a toss between an open-air sauna (if there is ever such a thing) and a brick oven. Sometimes I'm tempted to sprinkle quickmelt cheese on myself to see if I can be a baked good without tasting so salty from all the sweat. I know, it's gross but this heat is gross.

Hanging out here means hanging out with Joaquin, who's now two and a half and really really terrible at times. If he's happy he's a hoot, but even then you have to watch out when he's too happy because he tends to jump a lot and most of the time he'd land on some vulnerable part of your body, mainly the boobs. Even if my eyes are watering from the pain I manage to hold out on the bloody screams, because he mistakes those for cries of joy and ecstacy and would repeat the action until someone takes him off me.

To be fair, he does it to everyone.

When he wakes up at the wrong side of the bed he would swat anyone who attempts to speak to him. He shouts a lot too, and I don't know how parents do it, because when I can't take it anymore I shout at him too. I'm not proud of it, but sometimes he shuts up and says "Sorry, don't be mad." So I think I'm doing the right thing.

He talks a lot but I only understand about half of it, and he's fairly articulate. But there are times I know this conversation takes place, he just can't say it the right way:

Me: Why don't you play in the other room?
Him: Why don't you burn in hell?
(Actual conversation between Mom and Stewie, Family Guy)