I was eight or nine years old when Papa left to work abroad. I didn’t understand what that meant during that time, I only knew he’d work in Saudi Arabia, a country I never heard of before. My sister was just four or five then, and she didn’t understand why our father had to work so far away. She was sad for awhile, but like any child, she got over it and became used to our father coming and going every other year.
I missed my father the most because I was always the one who went with him when he was jogging, or when he swam at the public pool. He took me out to Hello Kitty shows and bought me toys after going to church on Sundays. When he left, I held on to the things that we loved to do and things that reminded me of him…and that was music.
One thing that I would always remember about my father was his love for music. At an early age I grew up listening to the Beatles, Queen, James Taylor, Kenny Rogers and Bobby Vinton…yes I sang to Bobby Vinton’s Dick & Jane 🙂 My father bought me a small guitar or ukelele and I would wear is Ray ban glasses, strum my guitar, and pretend I was a country singer.
He introduced me to Filipino Folk/Country Artists . Everyday we had Florante, Asin, Freddie Aguilar, and Coritha playing on our bulky stereo. Music brought him closer to me, and even when I joined the choir to sing at church, I sang for him. The only thing I wished was for him to see me perform on stage, but he was abroad and we didnt have video cams in those days.
I’m all grown up, with a family of my own, but when I listen to the old songs, I feel like I’m a child again. I remember I would step on his feet and hold tight to his legs as he paced back and forth when he sang along with his favorite records.
Now this song is from Coritha called Sierra Madre. In the Philippines, the Sierra Madre is a mountain range located in the north-eastern coast of Luzon island. It starts in the province of Cagayan in the north and ends in Quezon in the south, just east of Laguna de Bay. My father’s province is in Quezon and this is one of the songs that remind me most of him and my younger days in Quezon. Here is a song for you Papa…I love you so much!
You can also enjoy the other playlists I made in youtube at this link: http://www.youtube.com/user/thumbbook1