Plucking Leafs from My Tree of Memories Ch.9
I with my Tito Gerry, who was about ten; in the early '70s, in Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines. I was about two years old. In the picture, I was dancing to the beat of what was playing on our record player, while being prodded by an aunt of mine.
Masks and Plastic Soldiers
Tito Gerry (Gerardo A. Vera) is my mother's fifth, youngest brother, born on May 31, 1962; married to Tita Ethel (Ethel Sumugod-Vera). He met his wife already in Manitoba, Canada, and raised their children there—
Tristan Gerreth, now thirteen, and Trisha Caitlin, nine.
I was a grade-one pupil at St. Mary's Academy in Pasay City, August 1977, when my maternal grandfather and grandmother with their youngest child, my then fifteen-year-old Tito Gerry, immigrated to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. I remember feeling sad on my way to school on the morning of their departure. I was urging my mother to take me along with them to the airport, but of course going to school was far more important, so they said. [But if a similar circumstance happens in the future concerning my future child, I'd rather have him/her skip one school day than to always recall such event till adulthood with sadness and yearning.]
Since Tito Gerry was only fifteen when they left and I six, we never really had many memorable times together; although I very well remember how I was always a pesky child to him every time I would sneak to get some toys from the drawer containing his collection of carton masks and plastic soldiers and vehicles—the popular children's toys of his era.
Since 1977, only twice did I get to see Tito Gerry: in 1987, when he joined Grandfather and Grandmother in their visit to the Philippines; he was still single then; and in October 2003, when Grandfather and I spent a two-week vacation in Winnipeg, Manitoba; it was the first time I met his wife and children—Tita Ethel and Gerreth and Trisha.