(Editors note: The monsoon rains came just in time to save many farmers from near bankruptcy.)
SAN JOSE, Antique Chedengs path was far from my town, but it induced the southwest monsoon to sweep a good portion of Panay, including my province.
Neneng Cimatu, Roys boss (at home) sent word last Tuesday (May 27) if I could join them at a thanksgiving party. Roy came home in good health after a brief stay in Kuwait and Riyadh. The Saudi capital was bombed by terrorists after Roy left for Manila; he submitted a report to Malaca?ang.
Theres a good reason to have this party. Roys provincial staff ranging in age from 64 to 75 volunteered to provide a small lechon de leche in bad weather.
Recruitment agency for Iraq?
Manny Dado, 64, Roys chief of staff, borrowed a small tent to protect the lechon from wind and rain. When the wind changed course in Mannys direction he nearly choked as thick smoke can cause asphyxiation.
The girls, some four of them, asked Neneng if she saw Roy on TV dancing with pretty girls in Kuwait. There was no answer and the topic changed course by itself.
Nestie Rivera, the oldest in Roys barkada at 75, said that Roys visit to the Middle East gave him a good idea. He tells the other boys he would organize a recruitment agency. He adds: With Roys blessing, applicants will swarm my agency. Ill charge small fees for our drinks during the rainy weeks.
Manny barked at Nestie to drop his good idea of recruiting boys and girls for Iraq, saying if something goes wrong Nestie can land in jail without bail, like some recruiters here.
The general was having a joking and laughing session with Mayor Julius Pacificador. Neneng was in a tight conversation with my sister-in-law, Haydee Chan-Pefianco.
Rain and wind
Outside the Cimatu residence, wind and rain endlessly lashed the whole town. One of the guests observes quickly: Irrigation canals are now flowing and irrigation fees will be collected promptly even if the excess water was provided by nature.
One senior adviser, Col. Dolfo Abiera, was telling Nestie in one corner that his good idea of recruiting applicants for Iraq will succeed but put the general in a bad light.
It was raining hard and talking in loud voices did not suffice. The unnamed red wine the barkada bought did not make a few rounds. The dinuguan was prepared Visayan style with plenty of tanglad (lemon grass). …