Street love down Ongpin

There are a number of things I don’t know about my parents – about their life together before we, their children, entered the picture. This story is one I never knew about, until Mama had the chance to tell it to me in passing.

Two weeks ago, after an appointment in Pasay, I found myself in Binondo, with my Mama, picking up office supplies at San Miguel (or San Vicente) Street. Then we went to the famous Ongpin, to a jewelry store to buy my sister a pair of earrings. There are a lot of jewelers along Ongpin Street, by the way, for those who have not been there yet. Aside from authentic Chinese food, it’s nice to check out some interesting pieces in every shop.

Anyway, the main story begins here. In front of that jewelry shop is a store that sells camera needs, some food and fresh sugar cane juice. Now there may not be something interesting there, except that that was where Mama and Papa first laid their eyes on each other. (Insert my weird facial reaction here.)

Store where Mama used to work

Mama told me that she was selling sugar cane juice while Papa was up in that post across the street, fixing the telephone lines. Mama used to work as a helper in that store and Papa was a lineman at PLDT Binondo. Mama said, “Nagbabantay ako sa sugar cane juice nung natanaw ako ng Papa mo mula sa poste.” (Sabay tawa.) At first it felt kind of weird that Mama was telling me those things, but then I realized how important the beginning of their love story was to me, to us. I was happy that she told me about this. Even her friends in that store knew this story. One even said that after Mama, two other helpers met their husbands there.

The post at Tomas Mapua St. corner Ongpin St.

This year, our parents will be celebrating their union of 25 years. One in May, another in June, but they usually celebrate it in June. Mama, as of today, is not planning to arrange a huge party. Papa always jokes about not wanting to marry Mama again, just because many couples mark their silver wedding anniversaries by renewing their vows. So, I’m thinking, if  my siblings and I are able to save enough money before June, we will send them to their second honeymoon, either at Bellarocca in Marinduque, or at Thunderbird in La Union. That would really be one perfect, well-deserved present.

So for those who have not yet heard of these awesome places, here are photos from their respective websites.

Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa in Marinduque

Beautiful Rock


Bellarocca Island Resort and Spa

Thunderbird Resorts in Poro Point, San Fernando, La Union

Resort spectacularly situated above a cliff

I wish we could give them a much needed vacation as a gift. *fingers crossed*


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