Monday, May 8, 2017

Father and Son and a Carabao

Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog

Note: We are re-posting this article in response to requests of our audience.  It is a simple story of simple people; it gives a scenario depicting grassroots's values and idiosyncrasies, vivid to one who may be familiar with a similar setting and plot of the story, and characters.   
Philippine water buffalo or carabao is a docile creature, a principal beast of burden in Asia.  
A father and son had a carabao. One day they decided to sell the carabao, so they set off to the town market. As they were passing by a group of men idly conversing, someone said “Ay, ang tanga naman yon mag-ama. Naghihirap pa sila, pwede maman silang sumakay sa kalabaw.” (How stupid these two – they would rather walk than ride on the water buffalo.) On hearing this, both father and son jumped onto the back of the carabao and continued their journey.

No sooner did they pass another group of people walking down the road. On seeing both father and son atop the carabao, one commented, “Kawawa naman ang kalabaw.” (Take pity on the poor beast.) On hearing this, the son alighted leaving his father riding while he walked along. They continued on.

Not far away they passed by a shop where a group of young men were playing wooden pool, a local version of billiards. “Ay, hindi lang maawa sa bata yong matanda, pinaglalakad pa.” (Referring to the father riding, while the son was walking.) On hearing this, the two exchanged places, this time the son rode while the father walked along.

As they got nearer to their destination, they passed another group idly drinking tuba, young coconut wine. One had taken one sip too many, and with a characteristic slur commented, “Kawawa naman yon matanda, walang hiyang anak.” (Take pity on the old man walking, shame to his son.”

On hearing this, father and son scratched their heads, bewildered. “Ano kaya ang gagawin natin?

What option is left for them to do? If you were in their shoes, what would you do? Carry the carabao?

Note: Father and son took the carabao back home.

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