Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Memories of Old TImes in my Home Town

The chaotic world of the computer age made me thought a lot about the old folks in my hometown whom I had learned all the lessons of simple living. It would have been a lot worth living life if time hasn’t changed this fast and the world is still so peaceful and calm.

Looking back, I could still picture my grandparents and all the other old men and women sitting in a place they called “palasa”, which came from the English word “plaza”. This is a meeting place for the old folks if they wanted to have bonding or they wanted to talk about an important matter. They were simple folks who talked about things that were very important to the town.

If there were problems, they were easily solved by the old men without the help of the community officials. They were the voice of the people and what they said was considered law. The traditional life in my hometown was very simple.  The old men could decide matters and people listened to them.  The words of the old men were considered law in the olden times.  They were referred to as the "wise men" in my hometown.

It is sad to think that almost all the old men I adored have gone and what hurts me more is that I haven't even talked to them about the real stories of long time ago.  They are gone and what stories they might have stored in their minds to hand down to the new generation is also gone.

I was greatly saddened during my last visit in my hometown because I missed the “palasa “where I often saw the old men having a meeting. Today, what stood in place was a Barangay Building where the office of the Barangay Captain and other officials is located. Barangay is a village headed by a Barangay Captain.  The word barangay came from the word "Balangay", the boat used by the Malays when they came to the Philippines..

How I wish it was the same old community where I used to live, with all the “binangi”- the traditional home and the “palasa”. But then, time is ever changing and things also change in this world and the traditional things and culture are being modernized too. It is sad but people aren’t preserving the traditional ways and things and time will come when nothing will be left of the culture of the Igorots, save for the memories of old times.

1 comment:

JamaGenie said...

Sadly, the passage of time brings change, but I think technology and the internet have accelerated this process much faster than Mother Nature intended.