June 21, 2024

While waiting for my meal to be served, I couldn’t help but watch through the glass windows the clusters of people at the different areas along Session Road begging for the rain to stop.
That late afternoon was cold. I was shi-vering even if I was inside a restaurant. I just couldn’t imagine how the people outside felt. It had been raining heavily in the past weeks. In the last two hours before I arrived in Baguio City, rains had been pouring continuously. As I alighted from the jeep, I had to run and jump over one-foot-high running waters along and across the roads.
“Excuse me sir. Here’s your order,” a waiter interrupted.
I was about to eat after the waiter had arranged my orders on the table but my mobile phone rang. I opened the message inbox and a close friend of mine texted, “Happy birthday, padli!” Since then, my mobile phone kept on ringing with the same greetings from my family, co-workers, friends, and acquaintances.
I tried to reply to some of them with an invitation to join me but they all rejected it. Reason? It was because of the heavy rains! I would have been so happy if one of them came over.
“Happy birthday myself,” I muttered then started eating while the people outside were still busy praying for the rain to subside. By celebrating alone, I felt even colder than the people outside the window.
That was in August 2006. Heavy rains didn’t just force me to celebrate my birthday alone, not once, but thrice!
This year, I fear the heavy rains would ruin my birthday again since it has been raining the past weeks. I hope it wouldn’t.
Rainy days in August are always nostalgic. (AUGUSTIN A. DAO-ANIS)