Nanang Ine, the younger of my dad’s two sisters, died today of an asthma attack. Most probably, she died while desperately calling for her housemates’ attention as she tried to breathe.
Nanang Ine was known in my father’s village as deaf and dumb. But that didn’t stop her from expressing love and admiration, pain and depression. When happy, she would show us calendars and point at certain dates, telling us that she’d get married on that day. She’d also show cut-out pictures of the most dashing actors who, she said quite often, would bring her to church and marry her.
At other times, she’d wail and weep loudly especially when she would see her cousins, nephews and nieces getting hitched. Or when Inang would ignore her requests.
I would always remember Nanang Ine because she wasn’t really dumb and deaf. She was always smiling, patting my back, welcoming me home at their place and making me feel family. Perhaps, she’s my best tita on my father side of our big family.
Goodbye Nanang Ine. Thank you. And advanced congratulations on your grand wedding in the skies, with the most perfect husband and with Tatang himself by your side. Your innocence and warmth and honesty will win all that for you.