Posted by: Stef | November 13, 2007

bottling memories

like what Neil Gaiman’s Morpheus did to that fabled city of Baghdad (did i get that right?), i’d like to save my baguio inside a bottle and keep it hidden deep inside a trunk, where it can lie still and warm, under a blanket of dust, safe from age and other memories.

the road up to baguio would always be golden with the sunrise burning away the fog of the night before.

this baguio wouldn’t have that horrid SM Mall. In its place is the old Pines Hotel park, where kindred spirits played cards, climbed trees, drew their dreams on paper and burned incense. This is where a girl danced barefoot in her skirt and pretended to be a faerie under the February sun and where she and her friends counted shooting stars when the day was done.

this Baguio would have that lonely afternoon on the view deck of Tam-awan Village forever– where the sky was so clear that you could see the Lingayen Gulf shimmering orange in the light of the setting sun.

The rock at Beckel would be there, complete with Sixpence None the Richer’s Beautiful Mess playing in the background. It would have a makeshift dreamcatcher on a hill, and a mandala-printed bed sheet for a picnic blanket.

And it would have that sidewalk on top of session road where three loony students burned incense, lit candles and blew soap bubbles at passersby until the wee hours of the morning.

Somewhere in that Baguio would be a house that would always be open to a runaway from Manila. it would have lots of freshly brewed coffee and great food, and gentle words of guidance.

And last, there would be an old guard house at the Pines Hotel, where a boy and a girl waited the rain out. They talked and made jokes from their own corners in the small shelter. They stood there, apart, shivering from the cold, but afraid to even hold out their hands to each other for fear of rejection. It was only much later that the boy finally asked if he could hold her hand.

and she said yes.


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