Well, since my daughter is still young to talk with me (though I love that she's learning to talk and say many things -- to blog about this separately), I thought at first that I don't have anything to share for this week's coffee break. Then I remembered "my kids" when I was still teaching catechism to street kids. I was doing that weekly for about 3 years or more.
Yup, I was a true-blue catechist during my college years. My friends and I would go to the community near what used to be called K-Mart (near Katipunan/Ateneo) to teach the kids there about God and virtues. There were many squatters there before. Later on, they were all relocated by the government somewhere in Montalban (I think).
Oh boy, I loved those kids. I used to be afraid of them because I thought that they would be the future pick-pockets and criminals in QC. But no, their sweaty faces and dirty noses grew on me. I was able to look beyond the physical. We were able to see them every Saturday and then after every class, my friends and I would make visits to their tiny homes and try to meet and talk with their parents, especially the mothers. It felt great because I was able to forget myself every time I talk to these poverty-stricken (but full of hope) people. Our conversations were all very memorable.
Anyway (sorry for the long intro), one time, on my way to school one stormy morning, I went down from the jeepney in Katipunan to catch another ride going to UP. But the sidewalks were all flooded and problematic. Some of "my kids" were there and they were wise enough to put big stones on the street so that the people can cross the flood without submerging their feet/shoes in the water, but for a small fee, of course. When one of the boys saw me, they shouted "Ate Vina, Ate Vina! Padaanin nyo si Ate Vina! Ate namin nya eh." (or something like that). Haha. They held my hand and helped me pass through without having to wade in the flood. Obviously, I also need not pay them. The other people were looking at me with a big "?" mark on their faces. True enough, I was their "Ate Vina" and I felt like a million bucks (with a happy heart), though soaking wet! When I went to visit them that week, we all had a good laugh about our short encounter in the street. :-)