One of the things that I miss about being home is the long trips that I usually take with my dad. Ever since we were little, my parents introduced a certain kind of tradition in our family, where we would go on long-ish roadtrips, and to kill the time while we’re on the road, they would reminisce how they ended up together.
Back when we were younger, I relished these moments, and as a matter of fact, I looked forward to these trips every time summer came.
Years had come and gone. My siblings and I have graduated, and suddenly, these trips had ceased to be part of the family tradition. I guess departure is inevitable, and sometimes, growing up means letting go of these cherished moments, but in my mind, I still long for the day when we would once again travel as a family to Bacolod, Cebu, or Ilo-ilo. I know I am inclined to be sentimental, but family bonding moments have a special place in my heart, and I don’t think I will ever outgrow my fondness for these poignant occasions.
Last night, at about 8 PM, my dad asked me if I could accompany him to Siaton, an obscure municipality down south. This was because one of our company trucks had gone bonkers, and he needed to fetch our mechanics there, since there were no more buses plying that route at that ungodly hour.
The night was dark, and the sky was sparsely illuminated with stars that did not seem to shine, but I could not care any less. I was with my dad, and secretly, I was excited to share with him my plans for the immediate months.
I opened up to him that I was planning to apply as legal intern in the Office of the Solicitor-General, and he was elated to hear that I intended to. I told him I was reconsidering the Sweden exchange program that I initially wanted to pursue, so he assured me that they would support me whatever my decision would be. I reasoned that I wanted to finish on time, and that if I proceeded with that plan, then that would mean an extension of another year.
We talked about a lot of things — my brothers, their plans, their upcoming 34th wedding anniversary, Obama, our family business, the upcoming holidays. Our conversation reminded me of how it was before when we would talk about the future, think of it as one gigantic mass of opportunity, and blabber on about how our lives would be so-so years from that moment. It made me smile, because it’s been awhile since I talked with my dad that intimately.
When we arrived at Siaton, we saw the truck parked beside the road. My dad, with the help of the mechanics, used an hydraulic valve to find out what was wrong with our truck. The clutch had apparently jammed, so they decided to just fix it the day after. As we rode home that night, with our mechanics at the back seats, I felt happy to be home once again.
Yes, we all fly away from home as we grow old, but our hearts will always find solace in the comfort of home.