Nine years ago, my Lolo passed away. My cousins remember him as a disciplinarian. Never hesitating to tell them if they didnt stop misbehaving, they would get the belt ? I had a slightly different childhood with my Lolo.
I remember falling asleep in his lap. He would read me stories and sing to me. We would pick broccoli in his backyard garden, which I thought was the closest thing I would ever get to the Garden of Eden. When everyone would tell me I had to go to UCLA and be a doctor, Lolo told me never to stop dreaming and I could be whatever I wanted to be. When I was sad, he would tell me it was ok to cry but remind me I was beautiful and strong and could handle anything.
My Lolo, Cornelio, was a professor of agriculture at a university in the Philippines. That’s where he met my Lola, Adelia Gabriel, a librarian at the university. Together, they instilled a love of books and nature in their family.
Namimiss kita palagi. Mahal kita, Lolo.