Lolo died 21 years ago of cancer. Lung cancer, I think. I remember thinking, that day so long ago, as I drove down the hill from the freeway off-ramp...eulogy. I was a high school senior, and I had no idea what that word meant, it just popped into my head. We didn't take it up in school that day, otherwise I'd have known the meaning.
Eulogy. Just that word echoing inside my head as I drove the 1.5 miles from the freeway off-ramp towards home.
When I got there, the garage doors were wide open, the trunk door of the old station wagon was thrown open, the door to the house was open.
I rushed in, wondering what the heck was going on. Lola greeted me with tears in her eyes. She said that Lolo was gone. Just like that he was gone. I think she was trying to soften the blow for ME, not thinking of herself.
She kept telling me "Sayang, 6 years to go and we would have celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary. 6 years!"
I remember this distinctly because the both of us, Lola and I, were talking about what we both wanted for the golden wedding anniversary. They were plans, just plans, but still. We had both wanted to reach that day so bad.
Now, 21 years later, we still reminisce about our conversation when Lolo was being taken away. But now, we remember fondly, with a smile. And I'm sure Lolo knows this too, as he looks down on us from heaven.
We "celebrated" Lolo's death anniversary be having a first Wednesday mass at the office. Then the family met up at Wan Chai for some delicious Chinese buffet. Of course---no celebration would be complete with FOOD, now would it?
And you know what I was thinking during the Mass? Lolo now has 2 of his children celebrating his death...Tito Roy and Tita San. At least he won't be lonely anymore up there.
Wherever you are, I love you, Lolo!