Pagpag at Burger King.

THE MODERN HIDALGO: Entry_039.
Written: Tuesday. September 3, 2019.

It’s raining right now. It’s currently 12:41 AM. Me and my dad had just gotten back from St. Peter’s Crematorium for the last day of the wake of this relative of mine, who died at the age of 74. Had a well lived life. Left a family, but a happy family, I guess, and I hope. And would now go to the place above the clouds. To rest in peace.

This has been the third time there’s been a death in the family. One was from the Mother side, and two from the Father side. It is not going well for my psyche. I feel like this year in general is giving me a very topsy-turvy roller coaster of emotions — kind of experience. There’s been GOOD days & GREAT days. And then to balance that out, there are the BAD days, or the SAD moments. The thing about it that I can’t figure out, is how the BAD stuff sort of always stays with you longer than the GOOD stuff.

I’ve been going through a lot this past year alone. Be it GOOD or BAD stuff, it’s getting to a point where I’m almost just borderline going to explode like an atomic bomb if I’m pushed to the edge by all of it. And I kinda want it to happen. I want to break down, and just release everything that’s been boiling inside me, eating me up like a million parasites trying to squeeze me of my willpower.

You must be wondering why I’m actually writing something right now, since it’s way past midnight.

Well, I’m not really tired at all. Back in the funeral house, there was coffee available, so I brewed myself two cups of coffee. I guess that’s why I have so much energy right now. Though a bit sleepy. But my heart’s beating like 90 beats per second, or so. I dunno.

And I can’t really sleep yet, because we had just ate Burger King on our way home. There’s this Filipino Superstition about going to funerals. It’s about how going directly to your house might cause some spirits to follow you back from the funeral. Or I dunno. I’m not sure. But I think that’s the gist of the superstition.

Lost souls would follow you around once you go out of the funeral. And it will continue to follow you until you get home. So just imagine that. Imagine arriving at home, and then maybe days later, you start noticing some paranormal stuff happening in your house. That’s the spirit that followed you home.

That sort of thing freaks the living shit out of us Filipinos, so what we do is we “pagpag”. Which means, to go to any sort of place, in order for the spirit that followed you from the funeral house to stay there, instead of follow you back into your house.

Yeah, I don’t get it either. Don’t ask me. I didn’t make this stuff up. But apparently, this is crucial shit we need to follow here in this country.

Once we’ve done the pagpag, the spirit won’t follow us anymore, and we’re good to go home.

So my dad and I went to pagpag at Burger King. My dad hasn’t been able to eat at Burger King, since after his mild heart attack back in March. But now that he’s been bypassed already, he could now enjoy the luxury of eating food again. Delicious food. Like Burgers.

But my Mom disapproves of him eating Burgers. So what we did is we had to buy food for my Mom and Brother from Jollibee afterwards, which was just a few blocks away from Burger King. Just so that my Mom wouldn’t suspect us of having eaten at Burger King.

We were smart that way.

Going back to before the funeral part of the day— or night — we had a bit of trouble finding a jeep to ride getting to St. Peter’s.

We had just gone back from getting my newly fixed High Sierra bag from the Mr. Quickie stationed by the market place down at Dela Fuente Street. It was 6: 30 PM when we had started to look for jeeps to ride, which would drop us off at St. Peter’s.

Our target jeeps were the ones that had “SM. NORTH EDSA”, “MUNOZ”, or “TRINOMA” written on the placards placed on the jeeps’ windshields.

The problem was that, even though there were a lot of jeeps that had that sign passing by us, the jeeps were full. Sardine-level Full. We had to wait for about 45 minutes, before ultimately finding an FX that had a few seats available. We just went for that, instead of wasting more time trying to find a jeep that could fit both of us.

Time is more precious than Comfort…no, that doesn’t sound right.

Convenience is better than Contingency…no, I don’t think that’s right, either.

Saving money by riding jeeps are efficient and all, but if it takes up a lot of your time just finding one, then you’re better off with an FX

…there, I’ll settle with that. A bit long, and un-quotable, but whatever.

When we got there, there were a lot of people. Relatives I don’t know the names of. People I’ve seen before in family gatherings, but don’t really know how I’m related to them. That old chestnut.

It was the last day of the wake, so there were a lot more people now, than there were back in Saturday.

We spent a lot of time there. Luckily, I had my phone with me.

I wasn’t gonna talk to any of the relatives there, anyway. So what kept me entertained were the Youtube videos I had downloaded on my phone, that I could watch offline. Good thing I’ve bought myself bluetooth earphones, which I only bought for 99 PHP (I dunno if I’ve mentioned that before in the Journal). Even though it’s not the best audio quality earphones, it still does the job…most of the time.

It’s starting to do this weird lagging thing, where it stops playing audio for like a microsecond, and then continues playing, and then stops again.

It’s irritating, but it’s better than having to deal with wired earphones.

When I got bored playing the games on my phone, I ended up re-reading the first entries of this Journal. Back then, it was still the Daily Journal. Now, it’s just The Journal.

It’s weird to be reading something you’ve written. It’s always weird. Cause it doesn’t feel like it’s my work. Even though it clearly was something I wrote just a month ago.

It’s actually nice reading back to it. I haven’t really truly tried to read my past entries yet. I wonder what I’ve written. What I’ve accomplished…

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