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Category: Growing Up Filipino

I know where to find the best tasting Marang in Iligan City

I know where to find the best tasting Marang fruit in the Philippines. The marang fruit is the yellow-brown tropical fruit shaped like a baton with spiky covering. It is family to breadfruit and jackfruit, both of which are my favorites. When you split open the spiny covering, it…

I only wanted to touch her new toy

Have you ever felt like this as a child when you want something you know you can’t have and your rich neighbor has, and all you can do is just steal stares at her playing with her toys with downcast eyes…

The Seeds that Clogged My Nose

I didn’t have much toys growing up. Most of them are gifts from my father’s sisters. Since I was a girl, they gave me dolls but I don’t play with dolls as dolls. Dolls didn’t really arouse the child in me like the little girls…

I grew up playing 'real' war games on the hills

Growing up in a rural area stricken in armed-conflict between the rebels and the government soldiers, I learned how to play ‘real’ war games with the children in the neighborhood. We simulate the conflict by holding ourselves in two warring factions – one group living uphill and…

I was a child thief and master counterfeiter

I grew up under a spartan discipline but the hundreds of punishments of all types and degrees only hurt and scared me but never tamed me. Instead I learned how to steal, and steal and forge documents…

Flogged in Public during Childhood

Growing up in our neighborhood is fun. We formed our own cliché, composed of my siblings and I, my cousins, and our neighbors. As a group, we had a de-facto authority in the person of our older member we call “Manong”. Our activities consist primarily of talking about anything…

Whipped and forced to kneel on a floor of mongo beans because I didn't sleep

Back in time my brothers and I refuse to sleep and will do everything we can to escape from our mother’s detention. When caught, which is often, because our mother is clever(est) we get severe punishment…

Eating elbow to elbow in a boodle fight tradition

Elbow to elbow simulating a real ‘fight,’ the hungry participants assemble a ball of food with their hands big enough to ram into their mouths. Half the fun of this celebration is when somebody unintentionally or intentionally flings food particles into themselves or others…

How many Godparents do you have?

I have 13 godparents – an ominous number for some, but a lucky number in Chinese numerology. How about you? Tell me your lucky too…

I was smashed by a galloping horse in the neighborhood

When I was young about 6 or 7 years old, I was smashed into smithereens by a galloping horse in the neighborhood.
I was just playing inside our backyard peacefully by myself but as soon as I heard the hurried tick-tocking of the approaching beast I dashed out into…