Saturday, August 22, 2009

THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM

Just when I started getting back the semblances of my old self... Just when I was being SO DAMN GOOD in my career... Just when I have good well achievable plans laid down for the future... Just when I can reciprocate friendship and loyalty as I fervently did then... Just when I am being my old self in life and love and camaraderie and family... Just when I am learning to be happy once again...

Something like this comes along!

Dragging me back to the reality of how unkind twists of fate and reality is...

I am not here to tug at your heartstrings,
I do not ask for pity,
I only need you to hear
and open your minds,
And see a kindred soul,
Of a brother and sister,
Who lived, who loved, who cared,
Our lives are entwined now,
Perhaps more in death than life,
I ask you too, to continually see,
and appreciate, and fervently grasp,
and praise, LIFE...
Above all, I ask you to remember,
Of how beautiful the passing of life,
When alongside dreams, it goes by....







This was the time when the previous "small" ship I sailed a year ago encountered FORCE 11 gale along the North Coast of New Zealand. All of the 9 member crew had that morbid thought, that dark feeling we could have died anytime the seas and winds and waves were throwing us around like a twig.

But truth be told, I couldn't help but remember my wife's favorite song:BUBBLY.

This song filled me with a morbid sense of gaeity and lent a touch of dark humour to my dangerous predicament. I smiled and fought all my dread, inspired by the remembrance of someone whom I love dearly.

How I wish all my life's storms are just like this. Natural. These storms I could bear as stout hearted as I possible could. But that is not the truth in life, the hardest trials in our lives are the circumstances thrown our way that is so unjust, so unfair and so disheartening.

But I won't be disheartened. I will pursue this fight. For it is a fight for all that is good.

This is not natural, and it is more dangerous. But fight I will. For I know now that the only way I can move on is to dedicate myself for justice, for truth, for that rightful belief that ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL.

BECAUSE THE FORCES OF EVIL IN THIS LAND IS NOW AT NUMBER 12. THE PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW. WE NEED TO FIND THE EYE OF THAT STORM, AND FROM THAT VANTAGE POINT, SHOUT OUR INDIGNATIONS, OUR CONDEMNATIONS. AND WE WILL BE HEARD. TO ALL OTHER FIGHTERS FOR JUSTICE AND TRUTH, MAY I BE A WORTHY COMRADE IN YOUR RANKS. HEAR ME. KNOW ME. I COME SEEKING FOR JUSTICE.

beaufort scale- click here






This was on my birthday last July 12, 2009.

The crew set all these up. I was OVERWHELMED. For I knew then, that I am truly getting over my being an emotional vampire. I am becoming my old self again. An optimist. A damn good friend. A loyal companion. Willing to help. Projecting an aura of humility, of brotherhood, of love that inspires affection.

And I was that. And thus I want to remain.

Thank you mateys.

Not all are accorded this honor. I am thankful you have considered me worthy. Of love. Of friendship. I will remember. I will always remember.

How you made all this. How you did me great honor. How you accorded me with respect, a respect that was rightfully earned.

This was my calm before the storm. The storm that assails my life at this very moment. Seemingly tearing it apart. I will hold on to memories such as this. For these memories will strengthen me. How in a short span of time (4 months), I have shown strangers my capacity for friendship and camaraderie. How they willingly returned it. My big heart goes out to you all. You've made my third decade of existence a grand affair. GOD BLESS YOU ALL!






This was still on that 30th birthday. The natal day of a brother who loved a sister.

I would like to share this clip to you, for it is my sister's favorite song. Everytime I sang this song I remembered her. Everytime I will sing this song I will continue to remember her.

It will not sadden me. Instead this song will strengthen me, keeping my bearings clear and straight and true. My resolve absolute. For it remind me always of a life that was lived and was taken away hideously.

There is a haunting beauty to this song. A haunting resonance that will continue to embolden me.

I would like to share it to all of you.





This is still on that fateful day.

I have placed this song here as my reminder. That I am not without flaws. For I have many. And one of this is hurting one of the most important person in my life.

May this also remind her, that I loved her so and I love her still.

And that I will keep her in my heart wherever life takes me from here. That the memory of her will be the anchor that will keep me from drifting to dangerous shoals.



THIS WERE MY MOMENTS, MY CALM BEFORE THE STORM.

AND I WOULD LIKE TO SHARE IT WITH YOU.

TO DEDICATE IT TO FRIENDS WHO STOOD BY ME.

WHO ACCORDED ME THAT HONOR, THAT WORTHINESS OF BEING CALLED:

"FRIEND"

TO MY FAMILY.

TO MY WIFE.

AND FINALLY TO MY CHILDREN.



I WOULD LIKE TO STATE THEIR NAMES HERE.

IN JUMBLED ORDER BUT ALL FONDLY REMEMBERED.


RANDALL, GREG JR, DEWEY, JONAS, JASPER, RAYMOND, MERCK, GAVINO, NORMAN, WILLY, JESSIE, JAYSON, SHCC CLASSMATES, EDCEL, FRANCIS, FRANCIS, DUANE, LOUIE, RODEL, LORDAN, KATHRYN, ANGELICA, YANKEE, LUBERT, RAPHAEL, RONALD, YOLA, MARYANNE, MARICEL, SHARON, JANET, VANESSA, JAYSON, VINCENT, NORBERTO(RIP), MENACHIM, PEEWEE, ELY, ELPEDIO, WALLY, DIANNE, SCIHIGH CLASSMATES, SAINT JAMES CLASSMATES, MY BROTHERS FROM ALPHA KAPPA RHO (BARRETTO CHAPTER), MY BROTHERS FROM KYKLOS TRI ORGANIZATION (BARRETTO CHAPTER), MY BROTHERS FROM BATANG SAMAR-LEYTE (NOVALICHES CHAPTER), MY BROTHERS FROM DREDD (BARRETTO CHAPTER), MY BROTHERS FROM LOA (BARRETTO CHAPTER), MY BROTHERS FROM DIO (OLONGAPO CHAPTER), GERWIN, LLOYD CHRISTIAN, ANGELO, MARTIN LUTHER, JIMMY, JOTHAM A, BROTHAH SIR MANDY, CHUA, BABAG, SIR VILLEDAR, SIR RESPETO, SIR BARCS, SIR BACOLCOL, SIR SAMPA, CLASS MATES FROM ARCTIC, CLASSMATES FROM VEGA, CLASSMATES FROM VENUS,ELISAH, VICENTE, JOEVEN, ROMINUS, FERDINAND A., ATHAN, AYLEEN, IVAN B., JAYSON B., DOMING, RICO, JOEY, MARIO, JERRY, IAN, CARDANO, CHRISTINA C., JULIET, FREDERICK U.D., ILONA, RYAN, BENIDICT D., JIMMY E., JOJIE, LORELIE F., EDERIC, ARNEL, MARK, GREG G., TANYA, JHONG, BETH, ROMEO I., PHILIP J., CARLO J., ALEX MARTIN, GUNTHER PEDERSEN, JIMMY J., AMIR K. PANKHAJ D., LESTER, JANE, GRACE L., LEYSAM L., MAHYEN, MHAR, MAYA, JOEL NGIPS, ATE NI, CARMELA, NICK, MEL JOHN, DANILO P., LESTER P., ERICK P., MULONG P., PATMAN, RONALYN P., JAKE P., DANIEL P., ANGELO P., ARNEL P., DOCTOR P., ERWIN P., JZRYL, BOSS DAN, CREW OF ST MARTIN, RYAN T., EZEQUEL T., ROBIN T., RODEL U., JEBBIE A., ROGELIO U., LEONILO U., CHRIS V., KJELL M., PETER, MARICAR B.,DUDAY, ANNABELLE, RACEL S., LA, DAVE, ERNIE JAY, JHUN B, PANGI, ELMER T, ELAISA, BERNARD C, RANDALL B, EUGENE, FLEUR, GADO, FREDELYN, GARY T, JAZZEN, JEFF, ONG DARRYL JONES, RONNIE O, KELLY KIT, KRISTOFFER, DAYDAY, JOY, MAILEEN, MARIVIC M, MARK, MELDON, NONIE, MIKE LIMA NOVEMBER, BARBOSA, PEEAY, ROBERT D, STEVE MARK, FRITZ VON, THOMAS D, ARNO P, WOUTER E, MY BROTHERS FROM PMMA,


IT IS ONLY NOW THAT I HAVE MADE A LIST SUCH AS THIS. I AM TRULY HUMBLED BY HOW MANY PEOPLE TOUCHED MY LIFE THUS FAR. THIS IS STILL AN INCOMPLETE LIST. THERE ARE MANY MORE NAMES STILL UNWRITTEN.

IF I SHOULD GO, I ONLY ASK FOR ONE THING: FOR YOU TO REMEMBER ME AND MY SISTER.

WE DO NOT ASK FOR HERALDRY, OR PAEANS OR PRAISE.

WE ONLY ASK THAT.

TO BE REMEMBERED.

SPEAK OF ME TO MY CHILDREN. SPEAK OF HER TO HER CHILD.

DO NOT HOLD BACK, BE IT GOOD OR BAD, SANE OR FOOLISH.

THAT WAS ME. THAT WAS US. THAT WAS LIFE.


THERE IS ALWAYS A CALM BEFORE THE STORM.

AND THESE MOMENTS NEED NOT FADE AWAY FORGOTTEN.

REMEMBER ME. REMEMBER US.

Monday, August 17, 2009

RECKONING


click to enlarge
************************************************

TO FRIENDS, FAMILY AND BUNKMATES WHO HAS SHOWN SUPPORT, WHO IN THEIR SMALL SINCERE WAYS ARE HELPING AND SYMPHATIZING NOW! THANK YOU! YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE, IMPORTANTLY MY SISTER KNOWS WHO YOU ARE!

OUR DEEPEST THANKS!!!
-galleonaire@yahoo.com
-seamantotoo@yahoo.com

Sunday, August 16, 2009

HIMLAY

click to enlarge

Thursday, August 13, 2009

FROM THE PROFESSIONAL HECKLER

i am so sorry for your loss.

i have forwarded your message to mr. gorrel.

btw, have you tried approaching imbestigador or xxx?
authorities act on complaints faster when they know that media people are monitoring.

again, i am sorry for your loss.

----


I have heard from one of the most talented and fearless blogger the net ever knew... This is just a beginning! THANK YOU SO MUCH PROFESSIONAL HECKLER!!!- click here!

And soon Brian might follow....

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

THEY KILLED MY SISTER.....

"EVEN THOUGH IT BREAKS MY HEART TO LEAVE YOUR SISTER ALONE IN THAT PLACE, I KNOW IT IS FOR HER."


THOSE WERE THE WORDS IN MY MOTHERS LAST TEXT MESSAGE, JUST BEFORE I WENT HOME. SHE TURNED OVER THE CARE OF MY SISTER TO NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER OF FAIRLANE STREET, WEST FAIRVIEW Q.C. SHE CAME IN AS A DISPIRITED, DEPRESSED AND MENTALLY FRAIL INDIVIDUAL, WITH HER PERSONAL CONSENT, IN ONE OF THOSE RARE MOMENTS OF SHARP LUCIDITY. THAT SHE MAY LIVE NORMALLY ONCE AGAIN. SHE LOOKED THEN OF THE SHARPEST CONTRAST TO WHAT SHE WAS BEFORE HER ILLNESS SET IN: A V IBRANT, ZESTFUL AND FUN LOVING INDIVIDUAL. SOMEONE WHO LIVES LIFE TO THE FULLEST, EACH DAY AS IF IT WAS HER LAST. BUT NEVERTHELESS, SHE CAME IN ALIVE AND BREATHING. SHE CAME INSIDE WITH HOPE THAT IT WILL PASS, THAT SHE CAN THINK STRAIGHT ONCE AGAIN, THAT SHE MAY LOVE FULLY ONCE MORE, THAT SHE MAY KNOW AND LIVE LIFE AS BEAUTIFULLY AS SHE DID BEFORE.




















BUT SHE CAME OUT
VERY, VERY DEAD. UNTIL NOW THE TRUE CIRCUMSTANCES OF WHAT HAPPENED IS DENIED US. WE ARE ONLY LEFT WITH MIND NUMBING DOUBTS, WITH THE HEART CRUSHING PAIN OF KNOWING THERE IS AN UNKNOWN THAT OUR HEARTS YEARN- BUT CANNOT REACH. AND THIS SMALL PIECE ON A NEWSPAPER, WHICH WAS CONCLUDED WITH THIS WORDS: PATULOY ANG IMBESTIGASYON NG MGA AWTORIDAD SA NASABING INSIDENTE KUNG MAY NAGANAP NGANG FOULPLAY (THE INVESTIGATION OF AUTHORITIES CONTINUES TO DETERMINE IS THERE IS FOUL PLAY).





















BUT NO MORE. THE TIME FOR WAITING HAS LONG SINCE PASSED.
I WILL TRY TO RELATE HERE AS MUCH AS I POSSIBLY COULD, THE ACCOUNTS OF WHAT HAPPENED (WHAT WE KNOW OF AT LEAST). EARLY JUNE: MY SISTER SHOWED SIGNS OF A RELAPSE OF HER PREVIOUS PSYCHIATRIC DISORDERS, SHE EXPERIENCED AGAIN THE SYMPTOMS 2 YEARS AGO WHICH PROMPTED OUR FAMILY TO ADMIT HER TO AN INSTITUTION THEN. AFTER WHICH SHE CAME OUT AND WAS ABLE AND WELL AGAIN, WITH THE HELP OF ANTI DEPRESSANTS AND MOOD STABILIZERS. MY MOTHER ONCE AGAIN CONTACTED HER PSYCHIATRIST, BY THE NAME OF

DR. JAY MADELON CARCERENY


BY TELEPHONE CONVERSATION, SHE RELATED THE BEST SHE COULD MY SISTER'S CONDITION. THE DOCTOR ADVISED HER SINCE THE SYMPTOMS WERE WORSE NOW THAN BEFORE, THAT SHE MIGHT NEED TO BE ADMITTED AGAIN, A SCENARIO THAT EVERY LOVING PARENT DREADS FOR THEIR CHILD, THE LAST RESORT ONE CARING MOTHER CAN EVER CONSIDER. MY MOTHER DID NOT DECIDE THEN AND THEN TO DO SO, THAT MAYBE CONSULTATIONS MAY YET HELP. SO MY MOTHER TOOK MY SISTER TO HER PSYCHIATRIST'S CLINIC AT ALABANG TOWN PROPER MALL. MY SISTER HAD HER SERIES OF CHECK UPS FROM THE 9TH OF JUNE TO THE 13TH. SHE WAS GIVEN MEDICATIONS. SHE WAS GIVEN THE CONTACT DETAILS TO

VINCENT GONZALES
,


WHO MY MOM DESCRIBED AS A SOFT SPOKEN, HANDSOME FELLOW. IT WAS HIM WHO RUNS NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER.
MY MOTHER THEN BROUGHT MY SISTER HOME, AND TOOK CARE OF HER AS ONE HEART ATTACK SURVIVOR MOTHER POSSIBLY COULD. THERE WAS A NOTICABLE IMPROVEMENT, MY SISTER WAS STARTING TO BE WELL AGAIN. MY MOTHER CONTINUED HER CONTACT WITH THE DOCTOR. MEDICINES ARE SENT BY PARCEL OF WHICH MY MOTHER PAID DIRECT TO HER ACCOUNTS. SO IT WENT UNTIL A TIME WHEN SHE WORSENED AGAIN THE THIRD WEEK OF JULY. SHE INFORMED THE DR IMMEDIATELY OF THIS, OF WHICH THE LATTER PROFESSIONALLY ADVISED THAT SHE BE MONITORED CLOSELY AND IF UNABLE TO BE HANDLED AGAIN HAVE HER ADMITTED AS SOON AS THEY POSSIBLY COULD. SO IT WAS THE NIGHT OF THE 27TH WHEN MY MOTHER CALLED VINCENT AGAIN AND ASKED IF THEY COULD ARRANGE MY SISTERS ADMISSION.


TWAS THE FAITHFUL DAY OF
JULY 28 WHEN MY MOTHER, IN A HIRED VAN, WEARY OF HEART AND ASSAILED BY SADNESS, BROUGHT HER. MY SISTER WAS LUCID ONE MOMENT AND TOLD HER IT WOULD BE FOR THE BEST AND SHE IS WILLING NOW. BECAUSE SHE IS HOPING. SHE WAS IN THE SAME SPIRIT AS WHEN SHE WAS FIRST ADMITTED, CRYING BUT SERENE AND SHE GRASPED MY MOTHER'S HAND AND TOLD HER: "MA KAYA NATIN TO, KAYA NGA NATIN NUNG UNA, KAKAYANIN ULI NATIN NGAYON (MA, WE CAN GET THROUGH THIS, IF WE MADE IT THEN WE CAN MAKE IT AGAIN." YOU SEE, THE TRAUMA OF SEEING MY MOTHER THEN AS HER HEART WAS FAILING HER 3 YEARS AGO, WITH NEEDLE RIDDEN ARMS AND VITAL MONITORS ATTACHED, LED HER TO FEAR SHE MIGHT SOON BE GONE. AND WHEN SHE SURVIVED, THAT THE NEXT HEART ATTACK WILL BE THE FINAL ONE.




















MY SISTER LOVED MY MOTHER AWFULLY. AND WHEN SHE SAID THOSE WORDS, MY MOTHER KNEW THAT LIKE HER, MY SISTER WOULD FIGHT HER DEMONS, WOULD DO HER BEST TO EMERGE HEALED AGAIN. WOULD COME OUT FROM WHERE SHE WOULD STAY FOR "PROFESSIONAL CARE," WELL AND ABLE AGAIN. SANE AND MENTALLY STABLE ONCE ONCE MORE.
BUT LIFE AS WE KNOW IT, IS OFT UNPREDICTABLE, AND WHEN TRAGIC- SOUL WRENCHINGLY SO....


THAT DAY, VINCENT SHOWED HER AROUND FIRST. SHE ASSURED MY MOTHER THAT:


- MY SISTER WOULD STAY IN A ROOM TOGETHER WITH ANOTHER PATIENT. THAT SHE WON'T BE LEFT ALONE AND BE WATCHED AT ALL TIMES.
- THAT IF NEEDED TO BE ISOLATED, SHE WOULD BE STAYING IN A FULLY PADDED ROOM, AND PROCEEDED SHOWING MY MOTHER THIS VERY ROOM. AND MY MOTHER SAW THAT INDEED IT WAS WELL PADDED, THAT WHOEVER MIGHT BE KEPT THERE WILL BE PREVENTED FROM DOING HERSELF OR HIMSELF ANY HARM.


SO IT WAS THAT SHE HAD TO PAY, FOR IT WAS A PRIVATE INSTITUTION SUPPOSEDLY WAY BETTER THAN PUBLIC ONES. WHERE SHE MAY HAVE THE BEST OF CARE THAT HARD EARNED MONEY COULD POSSIBLY GIVE. MY MONEY!!! SO FOR HER INITIAL DEPOSIT THEY ISSUED HER THIS:

A MERE CASH VOUCHER. NOT A RECEIPT... MY UNEDUCATED MOTHER, DISTRAUGHT AND FEELING SO LONELY, DID NOT PAY THIS MUCH MORE ATTENTION AS IT SHOULD WARRANT. HER DAUGHTER WAS SICK. HER DAUGHTER NEEDED HELP. SHE NEEDED TO SEE HER DAUGHTER WELL. SHE WAS TROUBLED TO THE EXTREME. SHE ACCEPTED IT WITHOUT FURTHER QUESTIONS, ASSURING VINCENT THAT SHE WOULD PAY THE REST LATER ON, AS SOON AS I COULD SEND HER THE MONEY SHE NEEDS.... A MERE CASH VOUCHER.


WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

IS IT NOT A BUSINESS ESTABLISHMENT?


DOES ITS RECEIPTS NOT NEED DETAILS AS BEFITS A BUSINESS INSTITUTION? LETTERHEAD PERHAPS? REGISTRATION NUMBER? THIS IS ONLY THE FIRST IN THE SERIES OF TROUBLING QUESTIONS THAT TEARS MY LOGIC APART. I AM NOT A BUSINESSMAN, BUT SURELY I HAVE SEEN ENOUGH RECEIPTS IN MY LIFE TO KNOW AN OFFICIAL ONE.
WHY ISSUE A VOUCHER AND NOT A RECEIPT?

DO THEY EVEN HAVE A LICENSE TO OPERATE?

IT IS THESE VERY SAME QUESTIONS I WILL LEAVE TO YOU FOR KNOW. MYSTERIOUS. TROUBLING. SO MY MOTHER AND COMPANY LEFT, LEAVING MY SISTER ALONE, WITH A FEELING IN HER HEART THAT SHE HAS GIVEN HER TO THE CARE OF MORE CAPABLE HANDS THAN HERS. PROFESSIONAL AND ABLE WORKERS IN CARING FOR THE MENTALLY DISTURBED.

TWAS RIGHT AFTER THEN THAT SHE SENT THAT TEXT MESSAGE AT THE VERY BEGINNING TO ME.


"KAHIT ANG SAKIT SA LOOB NA IWAN C JOAN PARA RIN UN SA KANYA "
"EVEN THOUGH IT BREAKS MY HEART TO LEAVE YOUR SISTER ALONE IN THAT PLACE, I KNOW IT IS FOR HER."

WE RUE SOME DAYS. BUT THERE ARE TIMES WE WISHED HAS NEVER SEEN THE LIGHT OF DAY AT ALL.

SO RIGHT AFTER ARRIVING BACK TO OLONGAPO, FROM THE EXHAUSTING HOMEBOUND BUT SULLEN TRIP, AS STUBBORN AS SHE WAS- SHE CONTACTED THIS VINCENT IMMEDIATELY, ASKING OF HER DAUGHTER LEFT ALONE IN A PLACE WHOSE MANY OCCUPANTS' BRAINS DOES NOT FUNCTION AS IT NORMALLY SHOULD. WHERE THE DRUGS TO KEEP STABLE WHIRLWIND AND TROUBLED MINDS ARE FAITHFULLY ADMINISTERED TO THE ONES IN NEED.


"ETO NGA MAY DISTURBANCES PA SYA AT NAGBAGSAK PA NGA NG PINTO.' (SHE STILL SUFFERS FROM DISTURBANCES AND SLAMMED A DOOR ONCE)-
VINCENT

29- JULY


AM: WALA PA RING TULOG, TROUBLED PA RIN PO AT MAINGAY (SHE STILL HASN'T SLEPT YET, STILL TROUBLED AND NOISY)


30- JULY


AM:
VINCENT SENDS A TEXT MESSAGE TO MY MOTHER: "MA'AM, YUN PONG MGA DAMIT NI JOAN MASYADONG SEDUCTIVE!

" (MA'AM, JOAN'S CLOTHES ARE QUITE SEDUCTIVE.)
THIS PROMPTED MY MOTHER TO CALL BACK! ON THE MATTER, VINCENT EXPLAINED THAT MY SISTER'S SPAGHETTI STRAPPED BLOUSES ARE SEDUCTIVE.

AND THAT WOULD IT BE POSSIBLE TO ISSUE HER WHITE SHIRTS?, OF WHICH MY MOTHER IMMEDIATELY AGREED TO AND TO JUST PUT ON HER ACCOUNT.


SEDUCTIVE?


WHAT THE HELL?



WHAT THE FUCK?

















BUT THEN AGAIN, MY MOTHER TOOK THIS IN STRIDE. SHE HERSELF PACKED MY SISTER'S CLOTHES, TAKING OUT THE MINI SHORTS AND GAVE HER PAJAMAS INSTEAD. AND THAT YES SHE MAY HAVE FORGOTTEN THE UPPER GARMENTS, BORNE PERHAPS FROM HER FAMILIARITY WITH JOAN LOVING TO WEAR SUCH ITEMS. BUT THERE REMAINED IN HER MIND THAT NAGGING THOUGHT. THAT SOMETHING MIGHT HAVE COME AMISS. WHAT COULD VINCENT HAVE MEANT? WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN THE MESSAGE BETWEEN THE LINES COULD IT BE THAT SOMEONE, OR MORE APTLY, "SOMETHING," TOOK A WICKED NOTE OF THIS "SEDUCTIVITY?"


BUT STILL MY MOTHER WAS COMFORTED. THIS AFTER TELLING HER THAT AT THAT TIME, JOAN WAS FINALLY ASLEEP FOR QUITE AWHILE. THAT SHE WAS OK NOW REST WISE... AROUND NOON MY MOTHER INQUIRED OF HER DAUGHTER AGAIN: "OK NA PO SIYA NGAYON. GALITIN NGA PO EH." (SHE'S OK AT THE MOMENT, FEISTY EVEN)- VINCENT WHICH PROMPTED A SMILE ON MY MOTHER'S FACE, KNOWING FULL WELL HOW "SUNGIT" MY SISTER COULD BE.










SHE WAS A MOTHER!!!

31- JULY- 2009
PHONE CONVERSATION BETWEEN MY MOTHER AND VINCENT: THE GIST WAS MY SISTER'S REST AND SLEEP IS NOW OK BUT STILL THERE ARE SOME HALLUCINATIONS. MY MOTHER ASKS IF SHE STILL CRIES SPONTANEOUSLY, VINCENT SAID NOT ANYMORE.


01- AUG- 2009
TEXT MESSAGE: GIST WAS JOAN SLEPT WELL, SAME AS FOR THAT NIGHT.


02- AUG- 2009
PHONE CONVERSATION: GIST WAS THERE WAS A BIG IMPROVEMENT ON MY SISTER. SHE EVEN TOLD A STORY THAT VINCENT WAS ALIKE IN MANY WAYS WITH OUR UNCLE WHO WORKS IN THE US. AND EVEN KIDDED HIM OF BOYFRIENDS AND OTHER GAY MATTERS.


03- AUG- 2009
MY MOTHER WAS AWOKEN BY AN EARLY MORNING CALL. A DREAD SENSE OF FOREBODING CREPT INTO HER SOUL WHEN SHE SAW THE SCREEN OF HER CELL PHONE, FROM WHOM THE CALL WAS COMING FROM: DR. JAY MADELON CARCERENY

AND SO THIS FOULEST OF DAY IN MY FAMILY'S EXISTENCE BEGAN, WITH THE PSYCHIATRIST ON ONE LINE TELLING A MOTHER THAT HER DAUGHTER WAS FOUND DEAD. THAT SHE HANGED HERSELF AND COULD NOT GIVE ANY DETAILS ANYMORE. SHE CURSED THE SHRINK, AS THE ACCUSATORY IMPULSES OF A GRIEVING HYSTERICAL MOTHER WHO NEEDS A CHANNEL KICKS IN. AND WHO BETTER TO BE ON THE RECEIVING END THAN THE VERY SAME DOCTOR WHO RECOMMENDED HER DAUGHTER BE COMMITTED TO A PLACE WHERE SHE DIED NOT EVEN A WEEK AFTER GOING IN.


SO MY FAMILY- UNCLES, AUNT, COUSINS- EVEN MY FATHER WHO MOTHER IS SEPARATED WITH, TOGETHER WITH HIS NEW FAMILY- JOINED TOGETHER. WHERE HEARTS CAME TO BE ONE IN GRIEF AND HELD EACH OTHER ALL THROUGHOUT.
BUT THE REST OF THE TROUBLING SEQUENCE OF EVENTS IS YET TO COME. THE STORIES TO LATER FOLLOW ARE ALL FIRST HAND ACCOUNT FROM INTERVIEWS I CONDUCTED WITH MY IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS. FOR TILL THIS TIME, I WAS STILL NOT YET HOME. I WAS STILL ONBOARD, UNAWARE BUT IN A MYSTERIOUS SENSE (DETAILS OF WHICH I WILL FOLLOW LATER) AWARE!!!


MY AUNTIE WHO WAS MANILA BASED WENT WITH MY COUSIN TO NEWMAN HUMAN CARE. FROM THERE, THEY WERE THEN TOLD TO GO TO PRECINT 10 OF THE QUEZON CITY POLICE.
AT THE PRECINT, THEY WERE INFORMED THAT MY SISTER IS ALREADY TURNED OVER TO SAN RAFAEL FUNERAL HOMES, OWNED BY ROCELLE CRUZ AND LOCATED AT 62-B ROAD 3 PROJ 6 Q.C.


MY MOTHER WITH THE HELP OF RELATIVES WAS ON THEIR WAY, TRANSPORTED BY BALUYOT FUNERAL HOMES, A LOCAL AREA FUNERAL SERVICE PROVIDER TOGETHER WITH A DRIVER-CUM-REPRESENTATIVE OF THE AFOREMENTIONED.
THEY RENDESVOUZED BEFORE NOON. THEY ASKED FOR MY SISTER'S BODY. TO SEE IT WHOLE FOR THE LAST TIME. TO IDENTIFY THEIR DEARLY BELOVED.


MY MOTHER WAS IN HYSTERICS AND IN HER CRYING OUT WISHING TO SEE HER DAUGHTER "INTACT."
THEY WERE LED INTO CIRCLES, TOLD THAT THE BODY WAS HERE AND THERE, GIVEN VAGUE DIRECTIONS, UNSPECIFIED LOCATIONS.


ROCELLE MET THEM THERE. MY SISTER WILL BE AUTOPSIED NOW SHE SAYS, SOMEBODY ALREADY GAVE PERMISSION TO PROCEED. WHICH ELICITED MY MOTHER'S WRATHFUL CRY OF "WHO GAVE YOU PERMISSION TO DO SO, I AM THE MOTHER." THIS PERKED UP THE PROPRIETRESS, TURNING HER MOOD BRISK, BUSINESSLIKE, GLIB AND ACCOMMODATING BUT VAGUE. SHOWING MY MOTHER INSIDE AN AIRCONDITIONED OFFICE ROOM, CALMING HER, LED HER TO LINES OF CASKETS AND ASKED TO CHOOSE, ALL THE TIME SEEMINGLY SYMPATHETIC.



OUTSIDE IT WAS A DIFFERENT CASE, MY AUNTIES AND COUSINS, MY SISTER'S LIVE-IN PARTNER AND HALF BROTHER, WAS STILL LOOKING FOR THE BODY. THEY WERE LED TO CIRCLES, GIVEN VAGUE DIRECTIONS AND MISLEADING LOCATIONS. OVER THERE SIR, TURN THAT WAY- THAT BUILDING THERE ETC. MY AUNTIE WILL NOT FORGET THE GENERAL SENSE OF NORMALCY, BORDERING ON GAIETY AMONGST THE EMPLOYEES OF SAID FUNERAL HOME. MOST OF THEM WERE GOING ABOUT EVEN LAUGHING OR JOKING WITH EACH OTHER SHE SAYS.



THEY WERE NOT AWARE OF THEIR RIGHTS.
WHEN ROCELLE TOLD THEM IN A FIRM AND AUTHORITATIVE WAY THAT THEY WOULD CONDUCT THE SERVICE, TRANSPORT AND EVERYTHING TO OLONGAPO, THEY DEMANDED IT SHOULD BE THE LOCAL SERVICE PROVIDER. BUT ROCELLE INSISTED IT WAS TO BE SO. THE DRIVER-REPRESENTATIVE TOLD IT WAS NOT SO. THAT THEY HAVE A RIGHT TO CHOOSE THEIR SERVICE PROVIDER.


SOMEBODY ASKED THE DRIVER/REPRESENTATIVE OF BALUYOT THEIR OFFICE'S NUMBER. SOMEBODY CALLED THE FUNERAL HOME PRETENDING TO BE MY MOTHER, TELLING THEM THEY MAY ASK THEIR REPRESENTATIVE TO GO HOME NOW. AND SO HE WENT, LEAVING THE REST TO THE INSISTENCE OF SAN RAFAEL THAT BEING FIRST ON THE SCENE, THEY ARE THE ONES AUTHORIZED SO.



APPARENTLY, IT WAS MY HALF BROTHER WHO SIGNED A PAPER AUTHORIZING THE AUTOPSY. THEY TOOK HIM FOR HIS WORD THAT HE WAS THE BROTHER AND PROCEEDED SO, NOT EVEN ASKING FOR IDENTIFICATION PAPERS.
MY BROTHER CANCELLED SAID PAPER TOO, THREW IT ON THE GARBAGE BIN WHEN ADVISED TO DO SO BECAUSE MY MOTHER WAS WAILING FOR A CHANCE TO STILL SEE MY SISTER'S BODY WHOLE.

THEY WAITED AND WAITED.


"JOAN WHERE ARE YOU?"


THAT WAS THEIR MOURNFUL WAIL. THAT WAS THEIR UNANSWERED CRY. AND IT WENT ON FOR 8 MORE HOURS FOR IT WAS AFTER 8 PM WHEN MY SISTER, CLAD AND FULLY WRAPPED, INSIDE A CASKET, SEEMINGLY PEACEFUL BUT INSPIRING NO PEACE OF MIND WAS WHEELED IN.

"JOAN WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?"

IT WAS NOW A DIRGE. WAILED ALL OVER AGAIN, THEY WERE A GAGGLE OF UNEDUCATED ADULTS IN HYSTERICS AND CRIES, COUSINS AND A LOVER IN DISTRESS. FACED ONLY WITH THE SORROWS AND TAKING SMALL COMFORT ONLY ON LAMENTS AND MOANS AND ENDLESS TEARS. FACING AN UNKNOWN OF LONELINESS WHOSE MYSTERY LEAVES THEIR EMOTIONAL BEARINGS REELING.

THEY BROUGHT HER HOME. STARTED THE WAKE. FRIENDS WHO HEARD NEARLY FAINTED. FOR HOW COULD SOMEONE SO FULL OF LIFE BE DEAD NOW? SHE WAS KIND. SHE WAS LOVED BY MANY, MANY FRIENDS. SHE WAS EXCEPTIONAL FOR HER READY LAUGH AND ZEST FOR LIFE, EXUBERANT GREETINGS TO THOSE SHE KNEW AND HER SYMPATHY TO THE LONELY AND BROKEN-HEARTED.


SHE LIVED A SOCIAL LIFE WHERE FRIENDS GRAVITATED AND ATTACHED ITSELF TO HER READILY.
SHE WAS MY SISTER. SO THEY MOURNED. SO THEY HELD THEIR WAKE, TOGETHER IN GRIEF AND ASSAILED BY QUESTIONS OF WHERE THINGS WENT WRONG, OF WHEN MATTERS OF THE HEART AND LIFE WENT AWRY AS TO PUSH SOMEONE LIKE MY SISTER TO THE TAKE HER OWN LIFE. THERE ARE REMEMBRANCES, AND ANECDOTE HERE, A STORY THERE. BITS AND PIECES OF A LIFE LIVED, AND IS NOW FINALLY EXTINGUISHED. BUT THEIR SORROW CHANGED TO ANGER AND INDIGNATION. TO FURY AND WRATH. WHEN THEY DECIDED TO CHANGE MY SISTER'S CLOTHES FOR HER FINAL FAREWELL PARTY. THEY WERE ASSISTED BY FUNERAL MEN, BUT THEY SAW IN THEIR OWN EYES WHAT LOOKED LIKE BRUISES AND MARKS, IMPOSSIBLE THAT IN SUCH AWKWARD PLACES AND SEVERITY TO BE SELF INFLICTED









RIGHT LEG










LEFT LEG











FRONT UPPER TORSO











LEFT UPPER SHOULDER AND NECK











RIGHT LEG















FACE (BUMP?)











LEFT LEG











GROIN













UPPER
TORSO












RIGHT HANDS













RIGHT ARM












RIGHT NECK AREA( WHERE IS THE HANGING MARKS?)



(WHAT ARE THESE MARKS UPON MY SISTER'S BODY???
I AM NOT IN ANY POSITION TO MAKE A CONCLUSION, I CAN ONLY ASK AND CRY OUT FOR THE FRAILTY OF LIFE AND ITS CORPOREAL VESSEL. THE POLICE AUTOPSY, TEN DAYS BY NOW AND STILL NOT IN OUR HANDS. PCI MAMERTO BERNABE JR, MD AND CSEE CONDUCTED IT AND THE FINAL REPORT STILL NEEDS TO PASS THROUGH CHANNELS. AND SO I MUST ACT. AND SO THIS BLOG MUST BE BORN)



ANGER, INDIGNATION, FURY AND WRATH. INDEED THESE PHOTOS INVOKED IT SO. MY LONELY WAY FROM A CONNECTING FLIGHT WHERE I HEARD THE NEWS UP THE TIME I SET FOOT HOME WAS HEAVY AND DOWNCAST AND SORROWFUL. BUT NOT ANYMORE. WHEN I SAW THESE I KNEW I NEEDED TO ACT, I NEEDED TO FIGHT. RATIONALITY TOOK CONTROL,
4 YEARS OF ACADEMY TRAINING KICKED IN. I AM NOW MORE THAN ANYTIME IN MY LIFE, RATIONAL AMIDST DURESS AND GRIEF, CALM UNDER PRESSURE. ICE COLD, I WILL NOT BE ACCUSATORY, ONLY EFFICIENT AND SHARP. I HAVE NOW TAKEN OVER FROM THE GRIEVING ADULTS, THEY SEEMED SO UNSURE.


CONTINUATION..... 3 DAYS AFTER, THEY WENT TO NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER OF FAIRLANE STREET, WEST FAIRVIEW Q.C A GENERAL SENSE OF UNEASE IS EVIDENT AND MANIFEST ON EVERY EMPLOYEE. THEY ARE HESITANT IN HANDLING BACK JOAN'S THINGS. THEY ARE NOT COOPERATIVE. THEY SAID THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED TO TALK WHEN QUESTIONS WERE POSED. THERE WAS A VISIBLE TREMBLE ON THE HANDS OF ONE EMPLOYEE AS HE TEXTED TO CONTACT VINCENT GONZALES, ADMINISTRATOR. VINCENT WAS FIRST BUYING SOMETHING, WILL BE COMING SHORTLY. THE NEXT TIME VINCENT WAS ALREADY IN MARIKINA IN SOME BUSINESS OR SOMETHING. THEY ASKED FOR THE CERTIFICATE OF CONFINEMENT, THEIR REASONS ARE VARIED. VINCENT HAS THE FILES, THE FILES ARE MISSING.


THERE ARE RENOVATIONS BEING MADE TO THE PLACE.



MY SISTER'S BOYFRIEND TALKED TO THE LAUNDRYWOMAN. SHE SAID JOAN WAS A SWEET GIRL AND COULDN'T BELIEVE IN THE SHORT TIME SHE HAS KNOWN HER THAT SHE WAS CAPABLE OF DOING SUCH A THING.

WHO IS JOAN STAYING WITH IN THE ROOM?( MAYBE THEY CAN ASK THAT PERSON. JOAN HAS ALWAYS BEEN SCARED OF SLEEPING ALONE.)

SHE HAS NO COMPANY, SHE STAYS ALONE IN ONE ROOM.

REALLY?

YES SHE ANSWERS BACK.

HE TOOK THIS ANSWER WIDE EYED. THIS WAS NOT THE ARRANGEMENT PROMISED BY VINCENT FOR MY SISTER'S STAY AFTER ALL. WHEN CONFUSION AND DOUBT PLASTERED HIS FACE AS TO THAT REVEALED DETAIL, SHE WAS SUDDENLY UNSURE AND DIDN'T KNOW, COULD NOT REALLY REMEMBER. DROPPED THE CONVERSATION, SLUNK AWAY AND WAS SUDDENLY VERY BUSY.



THEY WAITED FOR HOURS AND STILL VINCENT DID NOT COME. SO THEY WENT BACK HOME. THERE IS SOMETHING ROTTEN GOING ON TO COVER THIS UP. UNTIL NOW WE HAVEN'T HEARD FROM VINCENT. NOR FROM ANY REPRESENTATIVE WHATSOEVER FROM NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER OF FAIRLANE STREET, WEST FAIRVIEW Q.C. UNTIL NOW WE ARE LEFT ONLY WITH THE MIND NUMBING WHAT IFS, THE PAIN OF GAZING AT A FACE BELONGING TO SOMEONE WHO WHEN ONCE SHE BREATHED WAS FULL OF LUSTER AND GAIETY AND THE VIBRANCY OF LIFE WELL LIVED TO THE FULLEST... SOMEONE WHO HAS ALSO WEATHERED SO MANY STORMS AND TURBULENCE OF LIFE. SOMEONE WHO WAS LOVED AND WHO LOVED SO MUCH IN RETURN....


LAST SUNDAY, AUGUST 8, ROCELLE CRUZ CAME TO OUR HOUSE. IT CANNOT BE HELPED THAT MOST OF MY ELDERS VENTED THEIR ANGER TOWARDS HER. BUT SHE TOOK THIS PROFESSIONALY. THERE MAYBE A MORE APPROPRIATE WORD, BUT "GRILLED" IS WHAT COMES TO MIND. WE ASKED HER AS BEST SHE COULD RECOUNT THE SERIES OF EVENTS OF THE DAY MY SISTER DIED. THIS IS THE GIST OF OUR CONVERSATION:

0400 AM- THEY ARRIVED AT NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER OF FAIRLANE STREET, WEST FAIRVIEW Q.C STANDING BY FOR THE EVENTUAL CUSTODY OF THE BODY. THEY WERE INFORMED FIRST OF THE EVENT. MY FAMILY DIDN'T HEAR ANYTHING UNTIL 0600 OF THAT SAME DAY.

0400-0500 PROBABLE TIME OF SOCO INVESTIGATION, CONDUCTED BY POLICE PRECINT 10


0600- THEY TOOK MY SISTER'S BODY TO THEIR MORGUE



0900- THE FIRST OF MY RELATIVES ARRIVES AT THE FUNERAL HOME SHE OWNS.



1100- BY SOME WAY OR ANOTHER, DUBIOUS OR OTHERWISE, THEY HAD MY BROTHER'S SIGNATURE TO CONDUCT THE AUTOPSY. MY BROTHER STILL INSISTS THAT WITH THE PRODDING OF ONE MORE OF MY AUNT, HE CANCELLED SAID FORM OF CONSENT AND THREW IT IN A GARBAGE BIN.



1200-
PCI MAMERTO BERNABE JR, MD AND CSEE STARTED TO CONDUCT THE AUTOPSY. NO FAMILY MEMBER, NOT EVEN MY MOTHER HAS YET SEEN THE BODY.

1640- SOCO COMPLETED. STARTED EMBALMING MY SISTER.

2000- BODY RELEASED TO NEXT OF KIN.
IN OUR CONVERSATION ALSO, SHE NARRATED THE FOLLOWING THINGS: - MY SISTER WAS FOUND ON THE BED. SHE WAS MOVED, THE PEOPLE FROM THE REHAB SAID, TO THAT POSITION. TAKEN OFF FROM THE ALLEGED BEDSHEET SHE USED TO HANG HERSELF. - IN A CONVERSATION WITH MY MOTHER, ROCELLE SAID THAT SHE APPROACHED THE ONE WHO CONDUCTED THE AUTOPSY. PCI MAMERTO BERNABE JR, MD AND CSEE TOLD HER: "ROCELLE MUKHANG MAY FOULPLAY. YUNG MGA PASA NYA SA KAMAY AT BRASO KASI NANGYARI BAGO SYA MAMATAY." (ROCELLE, THERE MIGHT HAVE BEEN A FOUL PLAY. THE MARKS ON HER ARMS AND HANDS HAPPENED BEFORE SHE DIED.)


MY MOTHER ASKED HER IF SHE WOULD BE WILLING TO TESTIFY ABOUT THAT CONVERSATION WHEN CALLED UPON, AND SHE SAID ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE. SHE ALSO TOOK NOTE ON THE MARK ON MY SISTER'S FOREHEAD.
I SECRETLY RECORDED THIS CONVERSATION USING MY CELLPHONE AND HAS MADE SEVERAL COPIES OF THAT "QUICKTIME" PLAYABLE AUDIO FILE. WHEN SHE PRESENTED US THE RECEIPT, WE WERE ALSO SURPRISED BY THE STAGGERING AMOUNT OF 120,000 FOR THEIR SERVICES.





















WE CANNOT HELP BUT RUE THIS FACT FOR THE FUNERAL HOME WHICH MY MOTHER BROUGHT TO MANILA AND SHOULD HAVE HANDLED MY SISTER WAS ONLY ASKING FOR A PACKAGE DEAL OF 40,000 PESOS. INITIALLY ALSO WHEN SHE AND MY MOTHER CONVERSED IN THEIR FUNERAL HOME, SHE TOLD MY MOTHER THAT
NEWMAN HOME CARE AND REHABILITATION CENTER OF FAIRLANE STREET, WEST FAIRVIEW Q.C SHOULD PAY FOR THIS AS THE UNFORTUNATE INCIDENT HAPPENED INSIDE THEIR PRIVATE INSTITUTION. BUT IT APPEARED TO US THEN THAT WE MAY HAVE TO SHOULDER THIS EXPENSE AFTER ALL.

MY BUNKMATE FROM THE ACADEMY OFTEN USED TO SAY,
"KAHIT BATANG MUSMOS ALAM NA MALI YAN." AND SO I WILL REPEAT IT HERE: EVEN A CHILD JUST OFF WEANING KNOWS THIS IS WRONG!! BUT TO HER CREDIT, I ADMIRE ROCELLE FOR TAKING THE TIME TO PERSONALLY SEE US AND SHEDDING AT LEAST A SLIVER OF LIGHT IN THE MURK THAT TROUBLES OUR VERY SOULS.

THANK YOU AND I HOPE YOU WILL STANDBY ON YOUR WORD THAT YOU WILL DO SO STATE WHAT THE AUTOPSY DOCTOR TOLD YOU WHEN COMES THE TIME IT WILL BE NEEDED. FOR RECKONING WILL INDEED COME SOMEDAY, THIS WE SWEAR.
YES, I KNOW THAT THE AUTOPSY IS ONLY A PART OF THE EVIDENCE, BUT KNOWING THAT THE ONE WHO CONDUCTED IT CONSIDERED SUCH A THING IS AN IMMENSE PIECE OF INFORMATION ON OUR BEHALF. IT EMBOLDENED US FURTHER TO GET TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS.


10- AUG- 2009
MY FATHER AND STEPMOTHER TRIED TO PICK UP FROM MANILA THE RESULTS OF THE AUTOPSY AND INVESTIGATION REPORT. THE INVESTIGATOR, SPO2 DING REBANCOS TOLD THEM THE AUTOPSY IS STILL NOT COMPLETE. THEY CAN, HOWEVER, HAVE THE PICTURES OF THE CRIME SCENE. THERE WAS NINE IN ALL:





















1st POLICE picture (ABOVE)
THIS IS THE ROOM WHERE SHE WAS ALLEGEDLY KEPT IN ISOLATION. THE BEDSHEET IS HANGING ON THE SIDE. I CAN'T HELP BUT WONDER HOW SHE MANAGED TO TIE THAT SHEET ABOVE THAT CEILING AND WHERE SHE STOOD BEFORE SHE HANGED HERSELF. IF SHE USED THE BED, I'M PRETTY SURE THAT WHEN HER SURVIVAL MECHANISM NATURALLY KICKS IN, SHE ONLY NEEDS STEP BACK A FEW CENTIMETERS TO BRING HER FEET BACK TO SOLID SUPPORT.




















second POLICE picture (ABOVE)





















third POLICE picture (ABOVE)


LOOK AT THE NECK, WHERE ARE THE HANGING MARKS? THERE ARE ONLY TWO PICTURES OF THE FACIAL AREA, BOTH HIGHLIGHTING ONLY THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE FACE.

WHAT ABOUT THE LEFT SIDE? IS IT BECAUSE OF THIS (SEE BELOW):

















PHOTO TAKEN BY FAMILY


OBSERVE THE VERY NOTICEABLE BUMP ON HER LEFT FACE, WHY ISN'T MY BELOVED SISTER'S LEFT FACIAL AREA PHOTOGRAPHED IN THE CRIME SCENE? THAT IS ANOTHER MYSTERY TROUBLING
ME


.






















fourth POLICE picture (ABOVE)

MY SISTER LYING FACE DOWN
fifth POLICE picture

















(ABOVE)
MY SISTER SPRAWLED SIDEWISE. I WONDER WHY NO PHOTOS OF HER FRONTAL AREAS WERE RELEASED! IF YOU SEE THE PICTURES WHICH MY FAMILY TOOK (SEE ABOVE), ALMOST ALL OF THESE "BRUISES" AND "MARKS" ARE IN THE FRONT.



















sixth POLICE picture (ABOVE)


THE ENTRANCE TO THE "ISOLATION ROOM" WHERE SHE WAS ALLEGEDLY KEPT.















seventh POLICE picture (ABOVE)
THIS ALLEGEDLY WAS THE BEAM WHERE SHE TIED THE BED SHEET. AND NOTICE HOW FIRMLY SHE TIED IT UP SO.






















eight picture (ABOVE)
MY SISTER, FALLEN COLD AND DEAD!




















ninth picture (ABOVE)
MY SISTERS PARTIAL LEFT SHOULDER AND EXPOSED NAPE, WHERE ARE THE HANGING MARKS?

ONLY 9 PICTURES.

NOTHING MORE!!!

ARE THESE PHOTOS ALL THAT WARRANTS TO MAKE THE NECESSARY INVESTIGATION???

WHATS'S WRONG HERE?

I FEEL THAT I AM DOING THE RIGHT THING NOW! I CAN FEEL MY SISTER WITH ME ALL THE WAY, AS I FACE THIS BATTLE AHEAD.

I AM STARTING WITH THIS BLOG. I HAVE PLANNED THIS BLOG FOR A VERY, VERY LONG TIME NOW. IT WOULD HAVE BEEN WITTY, FUNNY AND ENDEARING. IT WOULD TELL STORIES OF HOW I LIVED A SEAFARER'S LIFE. IT WOULD BE HONEST AND SELF-DEPRECATING AND BOLD AT THE SAME TIME.


THAT IS WHY THERE ARE OTHER POSTS HERE. I WROTE THEM WHILE I WAS STILL ONBOARD, HOPING TO POST THEM WHEN FINALLY I HAVE THAT MOST ELUSIVE OF THINGS: TIME. WE DON'T HAVE INTERNET CONNECTION AT SEA, THE PORT STAYS WHERE SHORT. I IMAGINED HOW THEY WOULD APPEAR IN MY BLOG, WITH THE FONTAGE AND PICTURES AND OTHER STUFFS THAT WOULD INSPIRE PEOPLE TO FOLLOW IT UP. TO CONNECT WITH OTHER PEOPLE AND BLOGGERS. TO MEET FRIENDS.

BUT IT WAS NOT TO BE SO. THEY ARE POSTED HAPHAZARDLY HERE, FOR EXPIDIENCY IS NEEDED.

FOR MY POSTERITY'S SAKE.


FOR I FEAR THAT WHAT WE FACE HERE IS SOMETHING BIG.

SOMETHING POWERFUL SO AS TO FACILITATE MANY INCONSISTENCIES AND BOTCHED UP ATTEMPT TO HIDE THIS.

AND THEY MAY COME AFTER ME.

BUT I DO NOT FEAR THEM.

I STARED DEATH ONE TIME IN MY LIFE BEFORE. AN EVENT I WILL NEVER, EVER FORGET. I KNEW THAT FEAR, THAT DREADFUL AWARENESS THAT THE END IS COMING. I WROTE OF THIS ALSO.

SEE MY NEXT BLOG AFTER THIS.

I FEARED IT THEN. EVENTS OF MY LIFE PASSED BEFORE MY EYES IN SPAN OF SECONDS.

BUT YET I LIVED.

AND NOW I AM FACING THIS, THIS FIGHT FOR MY SISTER.

THIS FIGHT FOR JUSTICE.

THIS FIGHT FOR TRUTH.

I KNOW I WILL NOT BE ALONE.

I CALL UPON MY FRIENDS, WHOEVER THE HANDS BEHIND THIS, KNOW THAT I TOO LIKE MY SISTER, AM LOVED BY MANY. I CALL YOU NOW IN THIS, MY MOMENT OF NEED.

I INVOKE THE LADY IN YELLOW, THE PATRON SAINT OF PEOPLE'S POWER. YOU WHO BROUGHT BACK OUR DEMOCRACY, SO THAT I MAY WRITE OF THIS, MY PLIGHT AND OF MY FIGHT. YOU WHO WAS INTERRED THE VERY DAY "SOMETHING" TOOK AWAY MY SISTER'S LIFE. INTERCEDE FOR US IN PRAYER FOR YOU ARE CLOSER NOW THAN EVER BEFORE TO THE BOSOM OF OUR MAKER. HEAR MY PLEA MADAM CORY, A TERRIBLE INJUSTICE WAS DONE THE VERY DAY YOU WERE FINALLY LAID TO REST. PRAY FOR US. THRU YOU, MAY GOD ANSWER OUR PRAYERS. BRING US THE MIRACLE WE NEED IN THIS FIGHT, THE MANIFESTATION OF YOUR SAINTLINESS.

I INVOKE THEE TOO ST JOAN OF ARC, YOU WHO ARE MY SISTER'S NAMESAKE. AS PATRONESS OF SOLDIERS, MAY YOU GUIDE THE PEOPLE IN UNIFORMS WHO WE WILL SOON INEVITABLY FACE. MAY YOU SHOW THEM THE MEANING OF HONOR, THE VIRTUE OF GENTLEMANLY COURAGE TO STAND UP FOR TRUTH AND JUSTICE. MAY THEY NOT BE USED TO VILE ENDS BY THE CRIMINAL AND THE CORRUPT. MAY THEY LEARN TO STAND UP AND DISOBEY THE ORDERS OF THE WICKED. MAY THEY NOT BE A TOOL TO COVER UP THE MONSTROSITIES OF THE POWERFUL FEW.

I CALL UPON THE LONG BLUE LINE,
ALUMNI OF THE PHILIPPINE MERCHANT MARINE ACADEMY. HEAR ME SIR! HEAR ME JUNIORS. A BUNKMATE IS IN DISTRESS. SPREAD OF MY FIGHT AND OF THE INJUSTICE COMMITTED TO YOUR BROTHER. STOUT FELLOW ALL, LEND ME YOUR STRENGTH SO THAT I WILL NOT FALTER BUT CONTINUE THIS FIGHT TO IT'S BITTER END. SO THAT I MAY HAVE SUCCESS AND GLORY, IN MY QUEST FOR JUSTICE, WHICH FROM NOW IS STILL NOT VISIBLE FROM THE HORIZON. PMMA HAIL TO THEE!!!

HEAR ME MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS, MY COLLEAGUES AT SEA. TO THOSE WHO BELONGS TO THE ORDERS OF NEPTUNUS, TO THOSE WHO KNOW THE ROLLING OF DECKS WHICH FLOAT ABOVE THE SEA. HEAR ME SO THAT A SEAFARER NEED NOT GO HOME AND FACE AN UNJUST DEATH AND SO BE SORROWFUL. SPREAD OF THE INJUSTICE OF IT ALL WHEN ONE MEETS DEATH AFTER A LONG TIME SAILING, FOR THE TIME OF SHORE LEAVE OF THOSE WHO GOES OUT TO SEA ARE SUPPOSED TO BE JOYOUS, NOT FILLED WITH GRIEF.

HEAR ME OH FOURTH ESTATE, WATCHDOG AND VIGILANT GUARDIANS AGAINST ABUSE AND HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS. HELP US IN THIS FIGHT. MAY IT BE KNOWN UPON THIS LAND ANOTHER CASE OF WANTON DISREGARD FOR LIFE. A LIFE SO DEARLY TREASURED BY MANY!



















HEAR ME MY ABDUCTORS OF 9 YEARS AGO, ONE DREARY NIGHT OF LATE 2001. HELP ME IN WHATEVER INFLUENCE AND WAY YOU CAN SO THAT THIS CASE, MY SISTER'S UNTIMELY AND UNJUST DEMISE, MAY BE ACCORDED THE RIGHTFUL JUSTICE IT SO DESERVES. RIGHT YOUR WRONG. HELP YOUR VICTIM AND IN SO DOING REDEEM BACK A PART OF YOUR WARRIOR'S ETHOS AND HONOR WHICH YOU LOST WITH WHAT YOU DID THAT TO ME THAT NIGHT. THIS I HUMBLY ASK YOU.




















HEAR ME GABRIELA, YOU WHO CHAMPION THE FILIPINO WOMAN'S HUMAN RIGHTS. BE WITH US IN THIS FIGHT, SO THAT NO MATTER HOW HIGH AND MIGHTY THE ONES BEHIND THIS, THAT THEY BE MADE ACCOUNTABLE TO WHAT THEY DID TO A FILIPINA WHOSE ONLY FAULT WAS TO WISH TO BE WELL AGAIN. A RIGHT EVERY WOMAN DESERVES. A RIGHT THEY VIOLATED WHEN UPON THEIR SUPPOSEDLY HEALING HANDS, A FRAIL LADY DIED INSTEAD. HEAR OF HOW LOVED SHE WAS. SHOUT OF HOW SHE LIVED AND HOW SHE MADE FRIENDS AND HOW SHE MUST HAVE PUT UP A FIGHT BEFORE THEY GOT WHAT THEY WANT. HEAR OF MY SISTER, A BRAVE AND COURAGEOUS WOMAN NOT UNLIKE ALL OF YOU!

















HEAR ME ALL OF YOU WHO ARE ALSO VICTIMS OF INJUSTICE, ALL YOU WHO KNEW AND LOVED SOMEONE WHO ALSO SUFFERED THE SAME FATE. YOU WHO CAN EMPATHIZE AND SYMPATHIZE WITH WHAT OUR HEARTS, MIND AND SOUL ARE GOING THRU NOW. HELP US TO HELP YOU KEEP THE TORCH OF THIS FIGHT FOR INJUSTICE BURNING.


















FOR NOW, I AM ALREADY TIRED AND WEARY. THE COUNTLESS SLEEPLESS NIGHTS HAS TAKEN ITS TOLL. I KNOW THE DETAILS HERE ARE NOT YET ENOUGH. THAT MANY MORE INFORMATION ARE NEEDED TO SWAY YOU TO BELIEVE US WHEN WE SAY WE FEEL SOMEBODY KILLED MY SISTER. SOMEBODY HIGH. SOMEBODY STRONG. IF NOT, THEN WHY ELSE THIS APPARENT COVER UP? HOW FAR DOES THEIR TENTACLES REACH???

















OUR BATTLECRY FOR THIS FIGHT WILL BE "JOAN OF OLONGAPO," AND UPON MY SISTER'S VIOLATED CORPUS, I SWEAR THAT I WILL DO EVERYTHING WITHIN MY POWER, WITHIN MY TALENT AND ELOQUENCE WHICH SHE SO ADMIRED, TO HELP BRING JUSTICE FOR HER DEATH.

FOR I AM NOW MY FALLEN SISTER'S CHAMPION.... HER KNIGHT.

SO HELP ME GOD!




































INUTIL....

THIS IS THE PERSONAL STORY OF MY ORDEAL ONE NIGHT, LATE 2001.

NASA ISANG BAR KAMI SA MANILA NUN NG BIGLA NA LANG DAMPUTIN NG WALANG KAMALAY MALAY. AKO ANG MINALAS NA NAPAGTUUNAN NG SOBRANG "ATENSYON." MATAGAL KO NG NILUKLOK ANG ISTORYANG ITO SA PANULAT. NAKATAGO SA ISANG USB. NAGAANTAY KONG KAILAN KO MAILALABAS. AT NGAYON, SA NANGYARI SA AKING KAPATID, HINOG NA ANG PANAHON.

NILALABAS KO NA TO UPANG MALAMAN, SINUMAN ANG MATAMANG NAGBABASA SA KASALUKUYAN, NA NARANASAN KO RIN ANG MAGING API NG ISANG MALING SISTEMA, NG ABUSO, NG KAWALA NG TAMANG PROSESO NG BATAS.

SA NGAYON, WALA NA AKONG SAMA NG LOOB SA NANGYARING ITO. GANUNPAMAN, SA MGA ILALAHAD KO RITO NGAYON, MULING AALAB ANG PAGASANG MAS MABIBIGYAN NG KARAMPATANG PANSIN ANG NANGYARI SA AKING KAPATID....

SA INYO, SA MGA TAO SA LIKOD NG PANGYAYARING ITO, KILALA NYO KUNG SINO ITONG NAGSUSULAT NGAYON. ALAM NYO RIN KUNG BAKIT AKIN NA TONG INILABAS.

SIR, IKAW NA HULING KUMAUSAP AT NAG "DE BRIEF" SA AMIN, ANG HULI KONG SINABI SA YO EH "I WISH WE COULD HAVE MET IN BETTER TIMES." AND YOU ANSWERED, "MAYBE SOMEDAY WE'LL MEET, OR MAYBE ONE DAY I MAY BE ABLE TO HELP YOU." I HAVE JUDGED YOU SIR, BY THE WEIGHT OF THE SINCERITY IN YOUR VOICE AS YOU ASKED FOR APOLOGY ON THAT VERY CLEAR CASE OF MISTAKEN IDENTITY. YOU ARE A GOOD GERMAN SIR. AND MAYBE MORE FROM YOUR GROUP ARE TOO.

KNOW THAT I HAVE NO INTENTION OF PURSUING THIS FURTHER TO A PUNITIVE END, NOT NOW NOT EVER. I BELIEVE WE ALL CAME OUT OF THIS KNOWING A LITTLE BETTER.

BUT THERE IS SOMETHING I WOULD LIKE TO ASK OF YOU:

PLEASE GENTLEMEN, WHEREVER YOU ARE NOW, IF YOU CAN IN ANY WAY, BEHIND THE SCENES OR AS SUBTLY AS YOU POSSIBLY COULD, HELP MY FAMILY FIND JUSTICE FOR MY SISTER, I WILL FOREVER BE GRATEFUL. I WAS YOUR VICTIM ONCE, BUT KNOW THAT IN MY HEART WE PARTED AS FRIENDS. YOU HAVE STRENGTHENED ME IN MANY WAYS AS THE YEARS WENT BY. YOU SHOWED ME THAT ONE COULD STARE DEATH IN THE EYES AND KNOW THE FEAR AND FUTILITY OF FACING DEATH, BUT STILL CONTINUE LIVING AFTER THE TEMPEST HAS PASSED. TO CONTINUE TO BE EMBOLDENED, TO OBSERVE HUMANITY PASSING BY AND PROMISING THAT IN THAT ONE SPARKLING MOMENT, ONE COULD MAKE A DIFFERENCE, ONE CAN SOUND THE CALL.

I ASK YOU THIS AS A FORMER VICTIM OF HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSE, AS A LAW ABIDING AND PRODUCTIVE FILIPINO, AS ONE GENTLEMAN ASKS OF ANOTHER.


BUT MOST OF ALL, I ASK YOU THIS AS ONE LOVING BROTHER CALLS OUT FOR JUSTICE FOR HIS BELOVED SISTER. HEAR ME! KNOW ME!

THIS AS I REMEMBER, WAS OUR STORY......


Inutil


Dilim. Yan ang tawag sa kawalan ng liwanag. Itim ang tawag sa kawalan ng kulay. Samantalang takot naman ang damdaming kabaligtaran ng tapang. Dilim, itim, takot; masuwerte ang mga katagang yan sapagkat nagbibigay sila ng sapat at solidong deskripsyon, na isang sandali lamang ay madaling rerehistro sa nakikinig. “Takot ka sa dilim eh kaitim itim mong tao!” Di ba wala pang isang saglit, alam na ng nakikinig na nangaasar ang nagsasalita? Siguro may kaibigang sunog ang balat sa araw na ayaw sumali sa larong taguan kung kaya’t inalaska. Pwede rin naman sabihin, “Magdilim sana ang buhay ng walanghiyang yan, walang takot sa nasa itaas at walang kasing itim ang budhi.” Isang pangungusap, pasok na pasok; sinumpa na pabulusok mula langit at pailalim tuloy tuloy hangang impyerno ang kung sinomang balasubas ang gumawa sa kanya ng kagaguhan.


Ako rin, merong isang halimbawa, eto oh; merong isang nagdilim na gabi sa aking makulay na buhay na napuno ng takot, dulot ng kaitiman ng intelehensya at maling pagkakakilanlan. Haba no? Parang pampilipit ng dila. Nais kong ipagpatuloy yan, linawin kung ano ang dahilan at kung paano nangyari. Ngayon ko lang siguro mailalahad ito ng may halong gaan ng pakiramdam, ngiti at kunting tawa. Higit din sa lahat, ng buong kaseryosohan. Matagal ko ring dinala ang bigat ng karanasang ito. Ang problema nga lang, kulang ako sa kataga at pangalan. Kaya’t sa bagay na to ay gagamitin ko na lang ang mga panghalip na “sila”, “kanila,” “kanya”at “nila”. Pansamantala nawang maging sapat sa pagbibigay pagkakilanlan ang mga panghalip na ito hanggang sa matapos ang aking munting sanaysay.


Taong dos mil uno, kalagitnaan ng repaso ko nun para sa nalalapit na pambansang eksaminasyon. Malapit lapit ko na ring matupad ang pangarap na pumalaot paalis ng bansa. Gradweyt ako ng pagka-seaman sa isang kilalang paaralan. Marami kaming sponsored ng isang agency na nagpapadala ng tao sa kanilang mga barkong pumapalibot din at ang biyahe ay pang buong mundo. Di naman sa pagmamayabang pero may nakuha rin tayong award ng magtapos, may husay din naman kung kaya’t medyo bugoy bugoy sa pagpasok sa review center dyan sa may malapit sa Roxas Boulevard. Balwarte ng mga marinero ang lugar na yun at malapit sa tinatawag na seaman’s park sa may luneta. Karaniwan ko ng iskedyul ang pagpasok lang sa unang araw ng lingo at sabay na kukuha ng mga handouts na papel at kung ano ano pang mga review materials. Matapos nito ay uuwi na ko sa aking probinsyang di naman kalayuan sa Maynila na tinatahak ng bus ng wala pang tatlong oras. Sa bahay ko na lang itutuloy ang pagaaral (sabay ng mga gimik).


Pero ng malapit na ang eksameng ito sa pagka-junior officer sa mga sasakyang pandagat ay naisip ko ng buuin ang ilang mga natitirang linggo ng pagpasok. Isang byernes sa mga panahong yun, niyaya ako ng isang kaibigan. Pre labas tayo. Wala akong pera pre eh. Ok lang yun sagot ko na muna. Darating din dun si Jun na klasmeyt natin. Kami ng dalawa ang gagastos. Ako naman palibhasa libre, aba eh sige.


Aaminin ko na ngayon pa lang na nalimutan ko na kung anong araw yun o maging buwan. Hindi ba kapanipaniwala? Mas lalo na siguro pagkatapos nitong aking paglalahad. Baka sabihin niyo napaka-unforgettable nyan para makalimutan. Pero sabi nga nila ang utak nga daw ay may kakayahang kalimutan ang mga mapapait at puno ng hilakbot na karanasan. Defense mechanism daw laban sa pagkabaliw. Di pa rin eh, matindi pa rin ang naging epekto nito sa kin. At ang sama pa, sa kalaunan to muling naglutangan na parang mga palitaw ng pighati.


Yun na nga, pumasok kami sa isang bar sa may Malate. Wala naman akong naramdamang anumang kakaiba. Kahit yung mga sinasabi nila na minsa’y nagkakaroon daw ang tao ng masamang kutob sa isang lugar, ako eh wala, talagang wala. Basta masaya lang ako at makakalibre ng toma. Di nagtagal ay salitan na ang puwesto namin sa pagitan ng dance floor at ng lamesa. Sayaw. Inom. CR. Papak ng pulutan.


Talaga namang buhay na buhay na ang aking dugo. Pinagpapawisan na ko sabay ng pakikinig at pagindak sa pang sayaw na tugtugin at tama ng alak. Maya maya, isang pagkakataon na nagpapahinga sa may lamesa, napansin ko na lang na matama ang pagtingin sa akin ng isang waiter. Hindi pala, mga ilang waiter din ang nagdaaan na pinagmamasdan hindi lamang ako kundi ang aming grupo. Sa pagkakataong yun meron na ring sumabay na ilang seaman sa min na mga kaboard mayt ng isa pa naming kasamahan. Karamihan din sa kanila eh mga taga timog ng bansa, may Ilonggo, Cebuano at mas interesante, mga taga-Mindanao. Syempre minsan sa grupo ay gamit nila ang kanilang lokal na dayalekto kung naguusap. Sa huli na lang na paganalisa saka ko naisip na maaring may kinalaman at signipikasyon ang kanilang gamit na dila. Bagama’t sa pagkakataong yun ay di ko binigyan ng gaanong pansin ang atensyong nakatuon sa amin.


Ang huli kong naalala bago nangyari na “all hell breaks loose,” ay ang paglalaro ng isang game sa cellphone. Bigla na lang na may sumigaw ng “Walang gagalaw.” Maya maya pa ay may isang papalapit ng matulin, may dalang isang maliit na kris na nakatutok at wari bang isasaksak sa akin. Nanlilisik ang mata ng mamang ito na di ko kilala at di ko pa nakita sa aking tanang buhay. Pasugod. Nakataas na ang kutsilyong ang korte ay parang ahas na gumagapang, kaya’t sa pagaakalang isa itong away o gulo ay tumakbo ako papalayo. Nahulog ang cellphone sa sahig ngunit di ko na inantala ang sarili sa pagsibat palayo sa huramentadong may patalim para lang damputin yun. Di rin naman sa akin ang abang telepono, kundi sa kaibigan kong nagyaya.


Napansin ko sa panahong ito na biglang tumahimik ang kapaligiran at katulad ng sinasabi nila na sa oras daw ng panganib ay mayroong “heightening of senses,” ganun na ganun ang aking naramdaman. Dala na rin siguro ng pagsirit ng adrenaline sa aking dugo, parang si superman ang pakiramdam ko sa aking sarili. Kung ihahalintulad ko sa sine ay para akong si Leo di Caprio sa pelikulang “The Beach” ng habulin ng isang armadong tagapag bantay ng taniman ng marijuana na kanyang pinagnakawan. Sumisigaw ang lalaki at naaaalala ko ang mga salitang “WAG KANG GAGALAW, WAG KANG GAGALAW” at “TIGIL, TIGIL! WAG KANG TUMAKBO.”


Matulin na ang kabog ng aking dibdib at parang napakagaan ng buhat at galaw ko sa aking sarili. Malinaw ang aking pandinig ngunit bandang huli’y para akong nabibingi sa lakas ng daloy ng dugo, ngunit kahit ganun, pagkalinaw linaw ng aking paningin. Kitang kita ko ang puti ng ngipin ng aking antagonista kada buka’t sigaw ng kanyang bunganga. Napakalakas na rin ng aking mga tuhod, hita at braso. May humawak sa likuran ko at humablot ng aking kuwelyo, pero sa panahong yun ay mas pinili ko ng mahubdan ng pang-itaas na damit kesa tumigil sa paglayo. Tumawid ako sa isang mababang pader at tumalon sa mga lamesa habang sumisigaw ng “TULUNGAN NYO KAMI.”


Dun ko na lang napansin na medyo ako na pala ang sentro ng pansin sa buong lugar na yun. Lahat ng tao mula sa dance floor hanggang sa ika-lawang palapag ng bar ay nakasilip sa akin. Sa akin ding paglingon ay nakita ko ang mga kasamahan ko na naka-tumpok sa isang sulok ng bar, kinakausap ng isang grupo ng mga kalalakihan na may tali ng “Good Morning” towellete sa kanilang nuo. Hindi naman tayo inosente sa ganitong senaryo at nakakapanood din naman tayo ng mga pelikulang Pilipino kung kaya’t sumagi sa aking isip na diyata’t mga pulis itong mga taong to. Hindi ko sila mabilang ng mga sandaling yun pero sa aking sandaling paglingon sa humahabol sa akin, at sa aking mga kasamahan, biglang may dalawang humablot sa aking braso. Dahil basa na ako ng pawis at natabig na mga barell ng beer, isama pa ang mga pulutang aking nadaanan at nabalandra sa mga mesang nadaanan, madali akong nakahulagpos at tumakbo uli palayo.


Di nagtagal, nakita ko na marami ng nakamasid pero wala ni isang lumapit para tumulong, wari bang isa isa ng nasabihan o nabiglang babala ang bawat lamesa na may ganitong bagay na mangyayari. Di nagtagal ay nahablot din ako ng humahabol sa akin at sinalya ng pabagsak at latag ang tyan sa putikan at basang sahig. Nakatutok sa likuran ng aking leeg ang dala nyang kris, kung kaya’t di na ako pumalag ng talian ng “retractable wire” ang aking mga kamay. Bukod dun ay nakadiin ang isa nyang tuhod sa pagitan ng aking mga balikat.


Bagama’t ang aking pagkakita sa mga kasamahan kong maayos na kinakausap ay nagpalinaw ng kaunti sa nangyayari, di pa rin naalis sa akin ang mag alintana ng itayo na ko’t simulang pamartsahin palabas. Bukod pa dun eh piniringan na rin ako ng maliit ding tuwalya, yung tulad ng nakabalot sa “kanilang” nuo kung kaya’t lalo lang nadagdagan ang aking takot. Ng sa labas na ng bar, dun ko na napansin na nagsimula ng dumiin ang hawak sa braso ko ng isa sa “kanila.” Patulak na rin at pasadsad ang pagdala sa akin. Di ko napigilan ang aking sariling magpanic uli at sa akin ngang pagpiglas, di ako makapaniwalang naputol ko ang wire na itinali sa aking kamay. Sabay nun ay inalis ko na ang piring sa aking mata. Dun ko nakita na marami “silang” nakapalibot sa akin. Nagsisigaw ako ng “Tulungan nyo kami. Papatayin nila kami.” Itinulak ako ng isa pababa sa may ilang baitang na hagdan patungo sa mga nakabukas na isang van at isang puting service jeep. Dun ko napansin na nakaupo na at nauna ng naghihintay dalhin sa kung saan man ang mga kasamahan ko. Nasa van na lahat ng aking kagrupo. Nakapiring na rin silang lahat at tahimik na nagaabang.


Pero hindi ako, hindi ako basta bastang sasama na lang.


“TULUNGAN NYO KAMI. PAPATAYIN KAMI,” yan ang aking malakas na sigaw sabay hawak sa partisyong bakal sa harap ng bar. Talagang kumapit na ko ng matindi, napamulagat na rin ako ng sa gitna ng aking paghe hesterikal ay napansin kong marami na pala sa “kanila” ang nakapagbunot ng baril. Lahat din ito’y nakatutok sa akin. Kung di ako nagkakamali ay aabot ng anim hanggang walong baril ang nakaumang sa akin ng sandaling yun. Lalo lang dumiin ang aking pagkakayakap sa malamig na bakal ng daanan papasok. Sumisigaw ako dahil sa taranta at takot. Nagwawala ako sa dahilang di ko alam ang aking kasalanan, wala akong natatandaang ginawang paglabag sa batas. Kung meron man isa sa mga kasamahan ko na may kasalanan eh dapat yun na lang ang kanilang isinama o inaresto, kung pagaresto ngang matatawag ang “kanilang” operasyon. Matino akong tao. Malay ko nga ba kung isa salvage kami. Malay ko nga ba kung mga pulis nga “sila.” Bukod dun, malaking parte na rin ang nagawa ng alkohol at adrenaline sa akin sa pagbibigay ng lakas ng loob sa pagpumiglas. Di nila ako basta basta na lang madadala.


Sa gitna ng aking pagsigaw ay meron pa rin naman akong rason at sa totoo lang ay malinaw pa rin ang aking isip. Kahit sino naman sigurong lango eh mahihimasmasan sa gitna ng ganung pangyayari. Alam ko rin na di pwedeng basta basta lumabas ang mga bala sa mga madidilim na butas ng “kanilang” baril. Napakaraming nakamasid, kumpulan ang mga tao at bukod dun napansin ko na propesyunal ang “kanilang” hawak sa dalang armas. Nakadistansya rin “sila” sa akin na wari bang umiiwas na baka maagaw ko ang baril ng isa sa “kanila”. Napansin ko na may bahid din “sila” ng alinlangan at wari bang dumisdistansya “sila” sa akin na parang isa akong mapanganib na hayup. Sa puntong ito wala pa ring linaw sa akin ang mga nangyayari.


“Tulungan nyo po kami,” sigaw ko pa rin at pagmamakaawa sa isa sa mga sekyu ng lugar inuman na yun. Nakita ko sa mga mata ng medyo katandaan na ring tagabantay ang awa at ganun na rin ang kawalang kakayahang makialam. Lalo lang lumakas ang aking hinala na maaari ngang mga pulis ang mga may dala sa amin. Bakit nga naman magsasawalang kibo ang mga taong yun kung di “sila” kabilang sa hanay ng maykapangyarihan? Ngunit malaki pa ring katanungan sa aking isip ang “bakit?” Bakit kami? Bakit ako? Bakit ganito?


Sa gitna ng pagkapit ko ng madiin sa aking salbabidang bakal, may isang lumapit sa akin. Bigla na lang “niya” akong sinipa sa mukha sabay sigaw ng “ABU SAYAFF YAN! WAG NYONG TULUNGAN YAN!” Ayun, medyo nagkarun na ng kunting kalinawan sa akin ang isang parte ng misteryo. At katabi ng kalinawang ito ang panibagong usbong ng pagkalito at pagalumihan. Sa panahon kasing yun, di maikakailang masigasig ang kampanya ng gobyerno laban sa terorismo at tinawag nga ang Pilipinas na “ally” o kakampi ng pamahalaang Estados Unidos sa gyera laban sa terorismo. Ito matapos ang insidente ng Setyembre labing isa.


Pero ano naman ang kinalaman ko sa Abu Sayaff na yan? Hindi ako myembro ng grupong yun. Katoliko ako. Yan ang mga agam agam na tumatakbo sa aking isip. Hindi pa rin ako bumitaw sa aking pagkakakapit at di pa nakuntento ang sumipa sa akin at sinundan pa ng di ko na maalalang beses sa ibang parte ng aking katawan. Marahil dala na rin ng pagkahilo at pagkayanig ng aking mukha at kaalamang makakapagpaliwanag pa rin ako bandang huli, napabitaw na rin ako sa aking pinagkakapitan at muli akong idinapa ng malalakas at mararahas na kamay upang palitan ang taling wire sa aking braso. Mas diniinan na rin ang piring sa aking mga mata. Pero ang di ko makakalimutan ay sa mga sandaling yun, waring wala akong nararamdamang sakit. Dala na rin siguro yun ng kakayahan ng isang tao na tumanggap ng di alintanang sakit sa gitna ng panganib. Kumbaga sa ingles ay “survival mechanism kicking in.”


Binuhat na “nila” ako papunta sa isang service jeep. Sumagi pa sa aking isip na ganung ganun ang service namin nung elementary ng mapagawi ang aking tingin dun nung kasalakuyang walang piring. Pero wala naman akong naalalang pagkakataon na ganun ka-sapilitan ang pagpasok sa eskwela. Sa loob, isinalya akong parang baboy na nakataob uli at lapat ang tiyan. Unang ipinasok ang aking paa at ang aking ulunan ay itinapat sa may tambutso. At ang masama pa, nauna ng tumakbo palayo ang van na kinalalagyan ng aking mga kasama at naiwan ako. Solo ako sa sasakyan.


Matapos na mailagak ay may tumawag sa radyo, “Sir secured na ang palaka.” Aba, at palaka na pala ako ngayon, tanong ko sa sarili. Sa totoo lang, kahit sa gitna ng aking kinahaharap, meron pa rin di maiwasang panloob na ngiti, naging palaka kaya ako dahil sa pagtalon talon ko sa mga lamesa o pagpisag pisag na parang kung anong dulas na palakang bukid? Ilang beses din naman kasi akong nahablot ngunit nakawala pa rin.


Ngayon na rin lang ako magtatanong, na kung ako si palaka, sino kaya ang ”kanilang” naging pagong? O naging unggoy? O ahas? Sino pa kaya ang mga katulad kong walang malay o kahit yung mga may sala na ginamitan ng ibang pangalan sa radyo, pangalan ng hayup o walang buhay na bagay, o anupaman? Katulad ko rin kaya ang mga taong yun na itinapat ang mukha sa usok ng tambutso ng bumabarurot na sasakyan, na di makahinga ng maayos sa kulang na isang oras na byahe tungo sa kung saan mang istasyon pinagdalhan? Na sa gitna nun ay paulit ulit na sinasaktan at nagtatanong sa sarili kung bakit? Nagmakaawa rin kaya sila at sumisigaw na “ang wallet ko, baka mahulog” ng paulit ulit? Sumagi rin kaya sa isip ng mga biktimang ito na kailangan nila ng pagkakakilanlan at identipikasyon kung kaya’t di dapat mawala ang kanilang ID o anumang bagay na magpapakilala sa kanilang tunay na katauhan bilang inosenteng mamamayan? Sa gitna kaya ng dinanas na pagmamaltrato ay gumagana pa rin ang pasilidad ng kanilang utak para makaligtas? Katulad ko rin kaya silang solo sa “service vehicle” dahil naituring na “volatile suspect?” Magisa rin kaya sila sa sasakyan na nagmakaawa sa gitna ng maraming tinatamong suntok, tuhod at batok?


Kung makikita at makakausap ko “sila” ngayon, ang sasabihin ko sa “kanila” ay dapat na tinawag nila akong “buwaya!” Sasabihin ko sa “kanila” na ang mga pagarte ko nun ng iyak ay “crocodile tears” lamang upang kahit paano’y maawa “sila” sa akin. Sasabihin ko na habang may sumasakal sa akin at naguudyok na sumigaw ng “Allah Akbar” ay hinahaluan ko na lang ng garalgal ang aking boses na nagsasabing “di po ako Abu Sayaff! Di po ako muslim,” sabay pag-huhuhu. Ipapaalam ko sa “kanila” na sa tuwing ganun ang ginagawa ko ay medyo humihina o nababawasan ang suntok. Sasabihin ko sa “kanila” na sa tuwing ako’y nagiiyak-iyakan, merong boses na nagsasabi na “tama na muna bok.” Ipapaalala ko dun sa nagsalita na di kailangan pa ang aking luha upang sabihan ang kanyang mga kasamahan na tao pa rin silang may awa- kahit isantabi na lang muna nila ang propesyonalismo eh, yun na lang magpakita naman ng damdami’t habag sa kanilang suspek at hindi brutal na pagtrato na tulad nun. Muli, sasabihin kong di ako palaka, buwaya maaari pa. Ngunit ang “buwayang” yun ay sa konteksto lamang ng ekspresyong idioma.

Papaalala ko sa “kanilang” meron pang mas higit na “buwaya.” Siguro meron sa kanilang masasapol (o marami?), kaya hindi na lang, sasabihin ko na lang na naginarte lamang talaga ako at wag nilang isiping naging iyakin ako sa mga sandaling yun. Papaliwanag ko na lang sa kanila ang dahilan ng aking mga bulaang luha’t paawa effect, na kailangan ako ng aking pamilya dahil pagasa nila ako sa pagangat sa buhay. Na ako ang kasalukuyang karamay ng aking natitirang mga kapatid sa kalungkutan ng pagkawala ng isa pang kapatid. Siguro ikukuwento ko na rin sa “kanila” ang ilang masasaklap na karanasang inabot namin. Ipapalam ko na ako na ang tatayong padre de pamilya kung sakaling makaalis matapos ang eksamen. At tatanungin ko “sila” na sino ba ang gustong mamatay ng walang kabuluhan, sa kamay ng mga taong di nya kilala? Sino ba ang gustong mabasag ang tahimik na pamumuhay at paghahanap aliw sa gitna ng pressure ng pagaaral- ng mga baril at kris, ng mga suntok at sipa, ng pagtapat ng ilong ng matagal sa nakasusulasok na usok, kahit wala namang naalalang masamang nagawa?


Sasabihin ko rin sa kanila na isang dahilan kaya ko nailalahad ito ngayon ay ang aking pagsubaybay sa kuwento ni Jonas Burgos. Alam kong isa lamang siyang halimbawa sa mga libo libo pang nawala at di na uli nakapiling ng kanilang pamilya. Sa isang banda, hinihiling ng aking puso’t isipan na sana’y di sya nagdusa. Sana ri’y hindi siya pinatawan ng tinatawag nila ngayong “EJK” o Extra Judicial Killing.


Siguro ikukuwento ko rin sa “kanila” ang ilang istoryang naibahagi sa akin mga nakasama kong dayuhang opisyal. Sasabihin ko na sa Denmark ay walang ganitong bagay, na ang kalayaang sabihin at ipahayag ang kanilang damdamin at sarili, magtipon at magprotesta ay parte ng kanilang batas at nirerespeto ng lahat. Na sa lugar na yun sa norte ng Europa ay malaya ang lahat, merong partidong legal ang mga kumunista sa parliamento at isinusulat at isinasalarawan ng mga peryodiko ang mga pananaw at editoryal ng walang takot. Hindi nga ba’t nagkagulo pa sa nangyaring pagimprenta sa guhit ng isang kartonista sa propeta ng Islam sa isang sikat na dyaryo ng bansang yun? Isang pagguhit na nagresulta sa kilos protesta ng mga kapatid nating muslim dahil sa diumano’y pambabastos sa kanilang pananalig. At sa bagay na ito, sasabihin ko sa “kanilang” wala akong radikal na prinsipyo sa relihiyon, na respeto ang aking alay anuman ang denominasyon ng isang nilalang. Sa aking pansariling paniniwala, bilang isang mandaragat na rin, ang mga pagsamba ay iba iba lamang anyo ng mga katig, ngunit nakakabit sa iisang banka. Isa lamang ang patutunguhan at dadaungan ng sasakyang ito sa kalawakan ng dagat ng buhay patungong kaligtasan. Sasabihin ko rin sa “kanila” na ni sa hinagap, di ako magkakabit ng bomba sa sarili para lamang kumitil ng buhay ng mga inosente. Hindi ako terorista sa pangalan ng sinasamba. Hindi ako pabor sa ilustrasyong yun, binanggit ko lamang ito sa dahilang hanggang sa ganung bagay ay bukas ang isip ng lahing yun sa pagtanggap sa paglalahad ng ideya at sarili ng kanilang kapwa.


Para na rin sa akin (at alam kong di ako nagiisa sa opinyong ito), lahat ng halimbawang aking nabanggit, mula man sa ibang bansa’y repleksyon pa rin ng wastong tama para sa lahat. Matibay itong batayan ng galaw ng isang sibilisadong lahi. Ang pangunahing konklusyon ko tungkol dito, napakahalaga ng karapatang pantao ng bawat nilalang. At kasama nga sa karapatang yun ang maayos na pagka-aresto ng walang bayolenteng pananakit. Lalo pa kung nasa panig ng awtoridad ang dami at armas, at higit pa kung laban lamang sa nagiisa at walang laban. Andun din ang maayos na representasyon at paglalahad ng karapatan ayon sa saligang batas bago dalhin ang sinuman. Hindi nga ba’t sinasabing inosente tayong lahat hangga’t di napapatunayan ang anumang bintang? Sabihin nating sa “kanilang” mga mahal sa buhay mangyari ang ganung bagay, di man ngayon kundi sa hinaharap, o sa sandaling mga wala na rin ”sila” sa kapangyarihan at serbisyo, ano kaya ang“kanilang” magiging opinyon?


Sa isang positibong banda, kung makikita ko kahit sino sa “ kanila”, magpapasalamat pa rin ako at ako’y humihinga pa rin. Salamat sa “ kanila” at walang kabadong nakahila ng gatilyo, na muntikan ng magpa- forced eviction sa akin sa Bansa ni Kuya ng habambuhay (kung may buhay pa). Orwellian ang paggamit ko sa Big Brother pantukoy sa “kanila,” ngunit sa nangyari sa amin matatawag din itong Big Blunder. Salamat din at kahit sa pagkakataong napuwing ang mata ni Kuya sa intelehensya (alam kong suntok sa buwan ang hiling na to-pero sana sa amin lang nangyari ang ganung kaso ng false identity), kahit pano’y naisalba pa rin “sila” sa pagkitil ng inosente ng “kanilang” gamay sa armas. Nawa sa susunod, sa tamang “palaka” na yaong mga baril na yun maitutok. Salamat din sa “kanila” at hindi isang walang laman na nitso ang magpapaalala sa aking mga minamahal na minsan ako’y nabuhay. Salamat at hindi kailangang magtirik sa puntod na yun para sa aking alaala. Ngunit kung nagkaganun man, alam kong kada puting kandilang ititirik ng aking naiwan para sa akin, may katapat itong kulay itim- para sa “kanila.”


Salamat din at di na makakapagyabang sa akin ang barberong madalas gumupit sa akin sa mga kwento nyang dekada sitenta. Nakultapan lang naman si manong ng isang sundalo dahil hippie ang buhok, minsan ding na curfew at pinagupit ng mga damo sa kampo ng militar. Marami pa siyang brutal na kuwento nagpapatungkol sa iba pa nyang kakilalang naging biktima ng opresyon, pero sa aking palagay ang dalawang yan lang ang pinakamalapit sa katotohanan. Nakakatawa pero sino ako para humusga, ako na ni minsa’y walang nakahalatang nagdadala ng ganitong eksperiyansya? Hindi ko ni minsan ibinahagi sa kanya ang nangyari sa akin. Sa mga panahong ako’y nagbabakasyon sa lupa, sasalampak ako sa kanyang lumang upuan, bago pa man paulit ulit na kumagat ang gunting ay sisimulan ko na ng tanong, “manong kelan nga ba nag martial law?” at saliw na sa magaang kamay ang kanyang makuwentong boses. Mga kuwentong nangyari di pa man ako nabubuhay, ngunit sa pangkasalakuyang ngayon ay aking naiintindihan sa isang malalim at personal na paraan.


Salamat din sa pagharap sa amin ng nakatataas na yun sa “kanilang” grupo at kahit paano’y naging daan ang “kanyang”paghingi ng pasensya na mapagaan kahit pano ang aking sama ng loob. Bagamat wala akong maisasamang mukha sa pagalala sa “kanyang” boses, sa sandaling yun ay anghel ang tingin ko sa kanya mula sa likuran ng aking piring. “Mistaken Identity,” yan ang bungad sa amin ng isa isang kausapin at hingan ng paumanhin. Salamat sa matiwasay naman at puno ng pagpapasensyang pagpapalaya “nila” sa amin. Musika sa aking tenga ang kawalan ng lagapak ng kamaong tumatama sa laman. Aking laman. Uyayi para sa akin ang ugong ng sasakyan papalayo sa kung san mang lugar ng interogasyon na yun kami dinala. Maayos na rin ang aking paghinga at wala ng usok na nakatapat sa aking ilong. Naalala ko pa ang nakakatawang insidente kung saan bago bumaba’y binigyan “nila” ako ng madiing utos na wag muna tanggalin ang takip sa mata hanggang di “sila” nakakalayo. Di ko napigilan ang sarili kong alisin kagad ang piring di ko pa man naririnig ang tuluyang paglayo ng sasakyan at lingunin “sila.” Naaalala ko ang maingay na pagpreno ng “kanilang” sasakyan at ang bigla ko ring pagbaling ng tingin palayo sa kabilang direksyon upang ipakitang di ko nakuha ang licence plate ng kanilang sasakyan.


Kung matagal kaya ang aking naging masid at nakita ko ang plate number ng sasakyan “nila’y” hahayaan pa ”nila”akong makauwi? Kinikilabutan ako sa tuwing iniisip ang bagay na yun. Ito’y sa dahilang nangako “silang” sa may Malate uli ako ibababa, malapit sa kung saan kami dinampot, ngunit ng tuluyang magmulat ang aking mata mula sa matagal na pagkakatakip, matapos mahawi ang namuong matitigas na muta, isang malaking building na katayan sa may FTI ang bumungad sa aking harapan. Ang amoy ay namumuong mga dugo at balat ng hayup sa semento, ang tunog na nakabinbin sa ere ay lagutukan at pagkadurog ng mga buto at bagsak ng matatalim na mga kutsilyo. Napakalayo ng FTI, Taguig sa Malate. At alam kong may signipikasyon ang pagpapalaya sa akin sa harapan ng isang meat processing plant. Di kaya isa itong babala para sa isang may balak komokak na palaka? Bahala na. Kung babalikan “nila” ako, ang tangi ko na lang mahihiling ay gawin “nilang” matulin ang pagkatay at wag ng idamay sinoman sa aking mahal sa buhay, ganun na rin ang aking mga kasamahan na pinalaya din sa magkakalayong lugar. Kung mangyayari yun, ang huling bagay na nakaukit sa aking isip ay napakamura pala ng aking buhay. Tatlong libo. Eksakto. Dahil yan ang iniwan “nila” sa aking halaga matapos ang lahat ng aking dinanas, bayad marahil sa abalang dulot ng “kanilang” pagkakamali. Sa sandaling yun, sa pagbabalik ng aking o anong sarap imulat na paningin at malayang gamit ng matagal na naitaling mga kamay, ng aking hukayin mula sa bulsa ang malulutong na piraso ng papel na siniksik ng mabait na kumausap matapos humingi ng pasensya sa akin, nun ako nagkarun ng bagong deskripsyon sa salitang “galak.” Tinanong kasi ako bago pakawalan kung magkano ang aking pera, naging matapat naman ako sa pagsabing higit tatlong daan lang na sapat pang pamasahe ang natira sa aking wallet na aking pilit iniwasang mahulog sa gitna ng delubyo, na kinumpiska at muli rin namang ibinalik, wallet na naging susi sa aking tunay na pagkakakilanlan at kanilang kamalian. Di ko inaasahang ganun kalaki ang ipapalit “nila,” nataong kailangang kailangan ko din ng pera sa panahong yun. Sa paguwi ko kasi sa amin para sa weekend ay meron akong matagal ng planong ilabas at mukhang maitutuloy na. Inaasahan ko rin na ako ay sasagutin na nya sa aking panunuyo. Ang matamis na pagasang yun, ang payapang dampi ng bukangliwayway sa aking pisngi, ang todo bigay na pag-awit ng nadaanan kong ibon sa isang puno, ang liwanag ng ulap at kalangitan, ang kaalamang patuloy pa rin ang pagtibok ng aking puso at nararamdaman ko pa rin ang samyo ng hangin, yan ang mga bagay na pumapaibabaw sa aking damdamin at isipan habang nakasakay sa bus na bumabaybay patungong Monumento, sa istasyon ng pamprobinsyang biyahe patungo sa amin. Pauwi na ako. At buhay pa rin.


Hindi ko maipapaliwanag ang damdaming yun, kahit ilang salita man ang gamitin. Isa lang ang aking masasabi ng buong tapat at katotohanan, sa sandaling yun at sa aking murang edad, nun ka naramdaman na NAPAKASARAP pala talagang mabuhay. Dun ko rin naintindihan ang aking nabasang mga linya sa isang libro, na sa likod daw ng bawat mukha na ating makakasalamuha ay may natatagong epiko. At ang istorya na yun ay espesyal at para lamang sa kanya. At sigurado ako, sa loob lamang ng isang magdamag, napakaraming makulay at masalimuot na pahina ang nadagdag sa aking pansariling kuwento ng buhay. At marami man ang di makabasa nun sa aking mukha at anyo, ito’y naroon at habambuhay ng parte ng aking pagkatao.


Mahirap man isipin ngunit nasa “kanila” ang desisyon kung mananatili pa rin ako sa estadong yun (ang tumitibok ang puso, ang nakikita ang kagandahan ng mundo, ang humihinga) matapos tong aking sanaysay. Marami nga naman ang makakabasa. Ngunit sa mga oras na ito, sa aking pagtipa sa mga letra ng computer board, alam kong hinihimay at pinipiga ko na ang aking pagkatao, determinasyon at kaluluwa tungo sa isang napakalaking hakbang. Patungo yun sa katuparan ng aking pinaka-aasam na dalangin, ang muli kong manamnam ng walang bahid ng anumang agam agam ang sarap, kulay at ganda ng bawat sandali. Nawa ito’y makatulong at sa wakas ay magkarun ako ng tinatawag nila sa englis na “closure.”

Nagpapasalamat ako sa aking trabahong malayo sa atin. Sa mga panahong naririto ako sa dagat, nabubura ng trabaho at laot ang karamihan sa aking mga agam agam. Ngunit sa aking paguwi sa panahon ng bakasyon, di pa rin maalis ang matinding kabog ng aking puso sa tuwing papasok sa anumang lugar ng saya na matao. Kaliwa’t kanan ang lingon ko sa tuwing mapapadaan kahit sa labas lang ng ganitong uri ng lugar. Kabado ako sa tuwing may titingin sa aking estranghero. Minsan din sa gitna ng gabi ay babangon akong malapot ang pawis at nanginginig sa pagalala ng nangyaring yun sa akin.

Isinulat ko rin ito sapagkat ayaw kong magtapos ang aking kuwento sa aking sarili, marami pa rin akong panalangin at muni muning ninanais itawid sa diwa ng marami. Alay ko ang mga ito sa mga yumaong naglaho at sa iba pang nakaranas ng aking pinagdaanan. Nawa’y mawala na ang pagkabalot ng kadilimang tulad nito sa ating kapulisan at sandatahang lakas.

Ganundin naman sa aking patuloy na pagsubaybay sa mga kaganapan sa ating bansa, pinagpupugay ko at kinagagalak ang pagkakaroon ng ating bansa ng Writ of Amparo, nawa’y maging matagumpay itong sandata ng hustisya at pananagot. Hiling ko na sana’y dumating ang panahong magkaron ng pagkakataon ang mga naiwan ng magkapatid na Raymond at Reynaldo Manalo na malaman kung nasaan sila at makamit ang nararapat na hustisya. Ganun na rin kanila Sherlyn Cadapan, Karen Empeno at Jonas Burgos. Iilan lamang sila sa mga pinaghihinalaang dinukot ng mga sundalo ng kasalukuyang gobyerno. Alam kong ang pagkawala nila ay nagdudulot hanggang ngayon ng ibayong sakit at pagdurusa sa kanilang mga magulang at mahal sa buhay. Iilan lamang sila sa mga taong may pangalan at pagkakakilanlan na sa ngayo’y parang bulang nawala ang katawang lupa. At sa panulat na katulad nito, patuloy nawang manatiling maliwanag ang kandila ng kanilang alaala.

Kasama na rin dito ang napaka bagong balita sa ginawa ng militar kay Melissa Roxas, ang hirap at pangaabuso na kanyang inabot sa kamay ng mapaghinala at abusadong mga miyembro ng lakas sandatahan. Totoo ang dinanas ni Melissa, hindi ito gawa gawa lamang. Ito na ang sistema at paraan uli ng mapangahas na elemento ng ilang nakaupo sa sandatahang lakas, ang pangaapak at pagyurak sa karapatang pantao ng isang nilalang.


Hiling ko rin na sana’y patuloy “silang” gabayan sa “kanilang” mga aksyon at paglaban sa kriminalidad at terorismo. Batid ko ang mga panganib na “kanilang” sinusuong laban sa lahat ng elementong masasama, mula sa mga kumikitil ng buhay ng marami sa pamamagitan ng mga bomba ng galit hanggang sa mga malahalimaw na namumugot ng ulo ng walang bahid ni katiting na awa. Sana sa “kanilang” paglaban sa krimen at kabuktutan ng humanidad ay panatilihin pa rin “nila” ang kanilang damdaming makatao at isiping tayo’y nagkakamali sa maraming bagay, sa intelehensya, sa interpretasyon ng mga turong relihiyon, sa pananaw at sa prinsipyo. Na marami kaming napapagitnaan ng “kanilang” giyera’t pagsagupa. Lahat kami’y kapiling “nilang” namumuhay sa mundo. Kami ri’y mga asawa, anak, kapatid, magulang at anak. Kami ri’y minamahal at inaalala.


Malamang sa sinulat kong ito ay maraming magsasabi, ang tapang naman ng tao na to, sa kasalukuyang klima ng kaliwa’t kanang pagkawala at pagpatay sa mga nagsasalita laban sa establisimyento, hukbong lakas at kapulisan ay nagawa pa ring pumiyok. Bakit hindi? Sa pagdedesisyon ng isang nilalang, wala na sigurong kasing lakas magudyok pa maliban sa kanyang pansariling husga sa kung ano ang tama o mali. Sa pagkakataong ito, hinusgahan kong tama ang aking gagawin kaya’t ito na ngayon ang aking boses. Maging patak man ito na daragdag lang sa karagatan ng libo lĂ­bong sentimyento o maging isa sa mga rumaragasang batis na titibag ng dam ng kawalang malay ay ipagpapaliban ko na lang sa tadhana.


Alam kong di ako nagiisa at napakarami ring dumanas sa aking pinagdaanan. Yun nga lang merong malaking kaibhan ang mga taong mayroon namang angking kakayahan at talento na ihayag ang kamalian at paglabag sa kanilang karapatang pantao, ngunit mas piniling ilihis na lang ang pisngi sa pagwalang pansin at kalimot. Ang ibang nadadala pa rin ng takot ay di natin masisisi; takot sa dilim ng kanilang karanasan o marahil ay takot na magsuot ng itim na ribbon o pin ang kanilang mahal sa buhay kung sila’y “babalikan” ng kanilang babanggain.


Itim, dilim at takot, katulad ng mga abang katagang ito sa aking panimula na nagkarun ng sapat na deskripsyon, meron din tayong tawag sa mga mayrun o nagkarun naman ng sapat na tapang, di man agaran kundi sa pagdating din ng panahon, at hindi lang tapang, kundi isama na rin natin ang pagkakarun ng sapat na rason at pagtimbang sa tama at mali, pero sa kahuli huliha’y mas pinili pa ring itikom ang bibig. Ayokong matawag na ganun, oo tao rin akong may kimkim na takot sa kinahaharap at hindi sigurado sa kung anuman ang dala ng bukas, pero para sa aking matamis na paghinga ng kasalukuyan, sa aking pagtatapos sa kinikimkim na pait at trahedya, at para na rin sa kinabukasan ng ating mga anak at minamahal ganundin ng sa “kanila,” na magtatamo ng sana’y mas matiwasay at pinatibay na demokrasya, ayokong habambuhay ngumatal at manatiling....


“Inutil.”