Monthly Archives: October 2013
It took a while before grandma reacted and said with her eyes still closed, “Would you like to read it aloud for me?”
“My pleasure!” I answered. With tremendous excitement that I opened the blog entry and started reading…
My Everdearest Charming,
“Happy 60th birthday… Rest assured that I never stopped thinking about you… God knows I never stopped loving you…
Now I can tell you… I worked in the Middle East only for 3 years… I returned to our country thereafter but I decided never to bother you… I made it appear to you that I stayed for good in the Middle East. Please forgive me for that.
I was there when you graduated in college and in graduate school…you just did not see me. I was there during your 30th, 40th and 50th birthday celebrations…I was there each time that I wanted to see you… Each time I would only be watching clandestinely from the distance and through the tinted glasses of my car…How lucky I would be when I would see you daintily tending the flowers in your garden as my car rolled by. You know so well that just seeing you would give me immeasurable joy. But I was wondering why you seemed to be sad every time I see you alone in the garden.
How I almost died in jealousy each time I pass by and witness in your terrace how gently your husband would kiss you in your cheeks and lips.
I was there also when you got married at the age of 25. You were the prettiest bride that I have ever seen. That was the most ironic moment in my life. While you were tying the knots, mine was unknotted for it was that day when the court approved the annulment of marriage that my wife filed. I never got married again for I vowed that you would be the last woman I would love.
Why did I stop blogging for the past 10 years? Your husband got sick and I don’t like to give you anymore additional burden, I wanted you to give him undivided attention. When he died, I tried to respect your bereavement. I may have stopped blogging, but never ceased in tirelessly watching you from afar.
I was watching, again from a safe distance, when you and a young gentleman came out of the gate of your house several minutes ago.
Upon hearing that portion, my grandma opened her eyes and excitedly exclaimed, “What did he say again?”
“Grandma, he was there when we went out to search for him, he saw us.” I retorted.
“Oh, that melodramatic fool,” my grandma said in exasperation.
Believe me, I was the happiest person on earth when I saw you. I would like to believe that you were looking for me, that you wanted to see me. I hope I am not so presumptuous, but under the bright light post I saw in your face how much you wanted to see me. When you were unable to locate me, I saw how sad you were, the same sadness that I saw when during our first and only date… it was a picnic that we had then… I told you that I would be leaving for the Middle East.
Now I have one request to make. I will now allow you to comment on this post. Please answer my questions.
Do you love me? Would you allow me to live the last days of my life with you?
My grandmother obliged. She requested me to encode her reply to her adorer’s questions.
If only you tried to show up before I got married, things would have been different. Right from the start you have stolen my heart. But I was so young and so afraid. I didn’t know what to do. I cried when you left. I wanted to stop you from leaving but I don’t know if you would listen.
I cried every time I read your blogs. And as the days, weeks, months and years passed I felt how much my love for you have grown stronger.
If only you appeared in the church during my wedding I would have ran to you and asked you to bring me anywhere you wanted. But you never did. I did not ask you to make the supreme sacrifice of giving me away to someone else because you always wanted to tow the line of propriety and morality. I don’t know if I would consider that sacrifice on your part or was it cowardice. It hurt me that you did not try to stand by your feelings for me. I would have preferred to be ridiculed by my friends and family…by society…than lose you.
You are right, I was not happy all those years because I kept waiting for you. My husband knows about you, about my feelings for you. We quarreled many times because he resented the fact that I could not forget you until such time that he accepted that you would always be part of me.
But I never told him about your blogs. Your blogs kept me afloat but I preferred seeing you in flesh and blood. I waited that show up and take me away, but you never did. My husband knows that anytime you appear he may lose me.
And here you are now, finally.
How cruel of you not to have blogged the past 10 years. It was during those years that I needed you most. Not just that. You doubled my pain. For not blogging you kept me drowned in anxiety. I did not know what happened to you. I thought you finally get tired loving me. I thought you were sick. I thought you were dead.
How cruel of you not to have just showed up, kissed and embraced me when I went out of the house earlier.
I want to see you in my garden tomorrow. Forget about me if you won’t come.
A moment of silence ensued, grandma stared and smiled at me and answered hesitatingly, “I… I was not sure… I don’t know.”
I was so disappointed with grandma’s response. I would like to believe what Peeker said that grandma is naïve, but who am I also to pass judgment on her.
“Goodbye Charming! The greatest pleasure that I have in my life is knowing you. Certainly, you will remain forever in my heart and mind. I will be praying for your good future. May you have a great family. As I wrote in the note that I gave you after our picnic… please read my blogs from time to time.”
How tirelessly that Peeker expressed his eternal adoration for grandma. Her feelings for Charming seemed to have not relented through the years. He never got tired blogging for grandma – telling her about events in his life – asking her for prayers for his problems and difficulties – detailing to her his pains and grief – expressing to her his unfathomable affection. That went on and on through the years…
“By the way grandma, did you regularly read your adorer’s blog?” I asked.
Grandma nodded and said, “Of course, weekly sometimes fortnightly, there were times I did it daily. I did it in secrecy, always in the wee hours in the morning when nobody would notice. But he discouraged me from giving reactions to his blogs, which I obediently followed.”
Asking grandma again how she felt about Peeker would just be a practice in futility for, as always, she would give a vague answer. But somehow, regularly reading his blog would mean that at least to grandma, her adorer is someone very special, or it could be more than that.
At 3:00 past midnight, I decided to allow grandma to finally have a rest. My thirst for information about her adorer was more than quenched. She promised to give me access to Peeker’s blogs anytime I wanted.
Then I remember the old man and the birthday card. Before leaving grandma’s room, I gave her the said card.
”By the way grandma, somebody wants you to have this.” She read the card as I head out.
“Wait!” She said, “Who gave you this? Where’s he?” I have not seen grandma so excited.
“An old man in a car, he parked by the nearby roadside before I came up here. I don’t know if he’s still there. Why
To my amazement, grandma got a jacket and scurried downstairs while wearing it. I followed her immediately. I felt an adrenalin rush for gut feel made me think that the old man who gave the card was grandma’s adorer. Fervently I prayed that the old man decided to stay longer. I opened the gate. Grandma got out first.
“Where is he… where?” asked my grandma. I scanned the segment of the roadside where I saw the car parked, it was no longer there. In the whole neighborhood that I searched, but my grandma’s adorer was nowhere to be found.
When I returned, my grandmother was standing in front of the newly-built bungalow where the old man parked his car. Needless to say any word, both grandma and I were despondent. My sadness emanated from the failed expectation that I would meet in person, the noblest lover I have known.
The source of my grandma’s sorrow was different. Now I no longer need to ask if grandma loved her adorer. Her actions that night betrayed her – her being so disconsolate for failing to finally see her adorer after more than four decades revealed what she truly felt for him.
We exchanged no words until we reached her room. I decided to stay with grandma. She lied down on the bed while I went back to continue reading Peeker’s blogs. My grandma’s eyes were closed. I watched her intently. Even in old age, she remained elegantly beautiful, notwithstanding all those wrinkles. No wonder why her adorer fell madly in love. Later on I noticed some tears falling from her closed eyes. At that instance, all the more that it became clear to me how she felt about her adorer.
After a few minutes, a notification about a new blog entry appeared on the laptop’s screen. After 10 years, Peeker blogged again for Charming.
“Grandma, wake up, Peeker has a new post for you!” There was no reaction from grandma, she seemed disinterested. “Did you hear that grandma, a new post from Peeker!”
TO BE CONTINUED…
My grandma looked at me, paused for a while then said, “Actually, during the last month of the program, he told me about someone serving as his inspiration, a very young woman. Then later on he admitted having fallen in love with her. But no matter how pushy was I in asking him when we talk or exchange text messages to divulge her identity, he would not.”
“I could sense excitement in the manner that grandma was reliving the past. Then she continued, “During our last session for the program, he asked if we could talk that weekend in a quiet place, just the two of us. I acceded for a gentleman like him I know could be trusted. We had a picnic in a park in the outskirts of the next town. He was undeniably happy, I have never seen him so happy. I have never seen him smile genuinely and never heard him laugh so vigorously. Before, he may smile but his eyes would always radiate sadness.”
“We talked about a lot of things but intentionally avoided touching on serious matters. He informed me though that he resigned from the university where he was teaching and after two months he would be leaving for the Middle East where he accepted an invitation to head the English Department of a university there.
Honestly, I became sad and momentarily speechless upon hearing that, I didn’t understand why. But I didn’t like him to notice it. I wanted to tell him not to leave the country but I chose not to. I really did not like him to leave. I don’t know why. We spent almost the whole day in that park.”
Then I asked grandma how his adorer told him about his feelings.
“He did not tell me anything about that young woman with who he fell in love with and draw so much inspiration from. Before we parted ways that day though, he gave me the note that I have shown you once before. He requested that I open it when I get home. Which I did.”
“Ahh, I remember that card grandma,” I said “But you did not allow me to read the short message it contains. Will you allow me to read the note now? Please…”
Miraculously, grandma nodded and gave me the note which she was just hiding in her purse.
“I know you will come looking for this note when I told you about this. So, I made sure you will find it,” my grandma said with a taunting smile.
Finally I got to see it. The note reads, “Falling in love with you was the most wonderful thing that happened in my life. I only regret that it is a love that was never meant to be. Leaving was painful but it is the best thing that I must do. Never have I asked anything from you in return except this one… please read my blogs from time to time.”
As planned, grandma’s adorer left for the Middle East after two months. But amazingly, he continued to write blog entries for her…
I was so happy on the eve of my departure because you allowed me to call you. We chatted for almost a couple of hours. Then playfully that I asked, “ Why were you born too late?”… and you answered, “And why were you born too soon?” We laughed at those oft-repeated lines in a movie.
Then I asked how did you feel when you learned that that young woman to who I fell crazily in love with was you. You said, you didn’t know what to feel, you didn’t even know what to say at that moment. Upon hearing that I wanted to think you are naïve, but who am I to judge you. Perhaps I was the one so naïve, putting an emotional burden on someone so young like you. I didn’t bother to push you further. Later you said you were so surprised that a person of my stature would be blinded by someone just like you, that you wanted to think that it was just one of those jokes I wanted to play on you. I offered no explanation for that occurrence in my life – falling in love with you – was something I could not explain also, it just came spontaneously. JOKE? It could be, but it is a joke that I did not play on you, but a joke that fate played on me.
Before my plane flew, I sent you several text messages. Unabashedly, I told you how much I love you. And of course you know what you said in return.
“Grandma, what did you tell him in response? He did not elaborate.”
“I admitted that he has become a part of my life, very much a part of my life. I told him that how I wished I could love him in return.”
My grandma momentarily stopped. “Hey grandma, what? What did you tell your adorer?”
TO BE CONTINUED…