Thursday, August 03, 2006

Saigon Visitors


It’s a new day. I woke up a little before six in the morning, my usual wake up time. I’m a bit excited because my daughter and grandson will be arriving from Saigon today.

I went to the water dispenser and placed the coffee mug on the hot water tap and pressed the button while letting the water touch my index finger to find out if the water is hot enough. My wife turns off the hot and cold water switch at night to save on electricity. She must have forgotten to do so last night. I overfilled the mug because I could not see well in the morning light the water level in the mug. The hot water reached the rim of the mug and overflowed. I went to the kitchen sink to throw out some of the excess water and went to the cupboard to get a sachet of sugar free three-in-one coffee. I think it was the last sachet and took a mental note to buy a box when I come down to Manila to fetch Lyn and David at the airport.

After fixing coffee I instinctively went to my laptop to plug the cable on the wall socket just below the end of the molave table. The west end of the molave dining table has become my writing place. I have two laptops on the table. My old one is used for typing my manuscripts while the other one is used mainly for playing a Texas Hold’em game. This laptop is owned by my son E. It is in a worst condition than mine. Half of the keyboard does not work.

My computer takes time to get electrically engaged. Once plugged you have to wait about five minutes for the connection to heat up, then you can push the opening button and wait for it to start. It seldom starts at the first click. Normally you have to try five to ten times before you could get the connection. I was lucky this morning to get it in two.

I must have forgotten my closing statement in yesterday’s writing.
After some frustrating starts at my writing exercise I swore to give it all up. I take back what I wrote. This is not a futile exercise. It is good to force oneself to write. Once the inertia of non-writing sets it would be difficult to shake it off.. What could start off as gibberish begins to take on a meaningful shape and you continue with more comfort seeing that what comes out on the page are not useless and inane word splatters.

I have missed my grandson David even if it was just a little less than two months ago since he was here last. I missed him each time I had Dustin with me as we looked for beetles beneath rotting logs in the garden, as we fed the carps in the pond and as we sat in the bamboo floor of the Balinese hut exchanging stories. Dustin would suddenly perk up as he espied dragonflies hovering over the pond and alighting on the reeds. He would disturb the pond surface by throwing a pebble on the pond skaters as they darted and glided looking like ice skaters.

I would miss David some more when Dustin starts to cuddle up and whisper in my ears that he would like to have a tree house which he and David will use as secret headquarters. The tree house would be an off limits place to those above ten years old and to young girls especially Nicole, their next door neighbor in Bansalangin Street. Dustin even went to the extent of drawing an elaborate plan of an eight storey tree house, a plan which his dad, an architect, would be proud of. I would if I could grant him this wish except that the trees I have in my lot are no more than four years old and are not big enough to support a tree house, much less, an eight storey tree house. I know that in a few years Dustin would lose interest in a tree house as he pursues new interests. It would have been worth the expense. Creating a moment of joy for my grandson is worth all the treasures in the world.

I have heard good news about David’s standing out in the British International School in Saigon with his straight “A” grades. His grades in all subjects were outstanding. What’s more, he has finally subdued an earlier nemesis, the math monster. However he still remains to be a joker and a prankster in school. He easily breaks into laughter with the slightest provocation. I guess his teachers just overlook his impishness because he does well in scholastic work.

My father who was an actuary, God rest his soul, would probably have a smile on his face because an offspring has taken up from him a proficiency in numbers. This is a facet that is newly revealed by David. His forte prior to this was communications because of his prodigious expression skills.

4 comments:

NanNan said...

I think there is no purer relationship than that of grandmother/father--- no issues, guilt, agendas-- love in its simplest form-- and that emotion permeates your writings-- I love my grandchildren too----

lovesjazzlovescoffee said...

Hello Halcyon!!

I just read your post and the love you express for your grandchildren is so pure and genuine!! How lucky they are to have you and you them!! That is the best gift we can give one another!!

I loved reading about the adventures you and D share!! he sounds like the nestest little kid!! I have never met him but love him throught yours and HB's writing!!

I loved your sharing your morning rituals....it helps me get a feel for you and your life. Thanks for sharing that!!

Dotto will soon be arriving and the fun will begin. Hope D comes soon too, to join in on all the adventures!!

Wonderful post....have fun with your grandsons!!

Ruby said...

Sir Ed, Please write about your molave table. That's rare! How big is it?

"The west end of the molave dining table has become my writing place."

wayfarer said...

Hi Ruby,
My molave table is about four and a half meters long and has a width of one and one third meter. It is big but not rare as you may have thought. It is not made of one piece. It has an inner rectangle and is framed by separate planks of molave would. One could buy this in Baguio or even in Manila.

I am now staying in Tagaytay and most of our furniture are made of wood, not the carved type but more of natural motif.

Thanks for dropping in again.