1-Baon- (Filipino word) means packed lunch or food.
2-Pochero- is a Spanish-influenced Filipino dish that typically consist of pork belly, beans, smoky sausage, vegetable and tomato sauce. (a stew) (https://www.kawalingpinoy.com/pork-pochero/)
3-Ola- (Portuguese word) Hello!
The room is filled with annoying noises, coming from the filthy mouths of my classmates. This is fine, as long they don’t disturb me.
I am playing with mind, remembering the image of a “dream catcher” which I saw randomly saw on the internet last night. I am concentrating in front of the sketch pad and holding this pencil, carefully tracing the paper. Making sure that the drawing is clean and tidy, free from the pencil marks since I commit mistakes.
I am enjoying my quiet and partially peaceful life in the corner near the window. I am glad that I can now endure those noisy people around me unlike before, I tend to get out of the room for me to draw peaceful. However, the happy times of drawing are over as the teacher enters the room. My classmates went to their seats and zipped their mouths. I am the only one who is seating on my proper seat, I took my book and notebook in this subject and sat properly. She started the discussion while my classmates were scrambling to get their things.
Oh, wait! I am not listening to her. Once I opened my notebook, I grabbed a pen and doddle anything running in my mind. It’s not like I hate studying, but I want to spend this time being “creative”. If I am not drawing, I may be writing a poem or a draft for a story.
After the first subject of the day, my classmates went back from being a quiet angel into wild demons as they are. They went back to make noise and continue making chaos and mess in the room. Since the class president is not around at this moment, I started to scatter the chairs, doodling the whiteboard, singing, and so on. They are partying like there’s no tomorrow.
My ears are now irritated to the noises that they are making, so I brought out my cellphone and earphones hidden in my bag and play my favorite song and avoid any disturbances. I haven’t stand up since I arrived at the school. As a slow love song played, at the door I saw her…
“Agatha…” I saw her, the most beautiful and amazing girl that I have encounter in my whole life. She arrived in the room late and not attended the first class. She appears to be exhausted after enduring the typical Monday rush hour. From that, I have an idea that she lives outside of this village. Despite being exhausted from facing the Manila rush hour, it doesn’t show up to her face.
She runs fast going to her chair and seat down to her seat. It was fast, but it becomes slow to me. Her black straight hair is still bouncing perfectly. She has this angelic, bright face enticing my eyes to look at her even more. Agatha is taking me to breathe away, the hand of time paused a bit while my lured eyes cannot stop looking at her.
“I am sorry! I am late!”
“Where are your books?”
“It’s in the locker.”
She runs at the back of the room, opened her locker, and took her book and notebooks. After that, she immediately went back to the place and seated. Meanwhile, I continued looking at her, her beautiful and sophisticated face. Her bright smile and twinkling eyes, and soft voice, taking my eyes away from the art that I am doing in the sketch pad. I nearly forgot the additional details of this drawing.
In a short time, I completely forgot what I am drawing and instead turned the sketch pad in a clean paper and drawing another. Since I got distracted by her, I decided to draw her. I haven’t finished what I am doing, yet I started another one. I start to trace a face, her almond eyes, quite a pointy nose, and straight brown eyes. The important thing I started tracing the new thing that I am going to do.
“Garcia are you still with us?” asked my teacher who was started teaching in the front. I immediately closed my sketch pad and put it on my bag.
“Franz, if you were listening earlier have a question. What is the action of changing location or position?”
It is so easy. “Motion.” I coldly answered.
“Well, good Mr. Garcia!” Immediately after praising me, “Keep those things that are not related in my class. We are not in art class; this is a Christian Living class.”
Meanwhile, one of my classmates sarcastically stated to our teacher, “He was drawing a face. You told us to draw something. He just did that early.”
Everybody laughed hard to what he had said. The teacher felt furious, so she asks a question to my classmate who disses her. “Okay. I am defeated! But do you think it is funny?”
Despite asking it with an angry voice, we can see that she was holding her laughter. “Miss don’t deny it to us! We already saw you laughing!” someone shouted from the back of the room.
She finally burst into silent laughter. My classmates teasing her morbidly ending that she forgot to discuss to us the activity. After a few minutes of laughing, she finally discussed the supposed activity that becomes homework. We are just going to draw the moral lesson of the lesson, which way to easy.
As the bell rings loudly, we finally took a 30-minutes break. While my “normal” classmates went to the cafeteria and buy a snack. Some of my classmates bought their food and went outside the room and ate their food. I still stayed in my chair and continued what I am doing earlier. After I finished tracing her face, I went back to the “dream catcher” and continue drawing it.
As my classmates went back to the room, I finally finished the “dream catcher” that I did last night before I slept. I was supposed to continue to draw the “face” but, the teacher went in front and starts the lesson.
I took the book and notebook on this subject and started listening. Without writing or drawing something.
No! I still draw something in my notebook. I also practice my lettering skills, with different fonts that I saw on the internet.
After another two classes, it is our lunch break. Since my mom always prepares a “(1)baon”. I don’t have to go out to buy food somewhere, like the crowded canteen. After that, I continued drawing Agatha’s face. I do want to call it, “The Face of an Angel”. I am hiding, making it sure that my classmates wouldn’t see what I am drawing in my sketch pad.
“Who is that?” asked my classmate.
I immediately closed it and hide it. I replied in my normal cold voice, “Nothing. It is just a random face I saw in the street earlier.” I grab a book from my bag and read it. Acting and pretending that I am not doing something. When my classmate left me alone, I brought back my book and continue drawing.
Before the afternoon classes start, I went to the comfort room. I usually do this because the next class doesn’t want students to go out much as it disturbs the class. Since it is lunchtime, we have a lot of time to do our businesses. While walking in the hallway, I come across to Agatha and her friends. They are walking going probably to the female comfort room. I do want to look at her, long as earlier but I tried not to because of her friends. I am afraid that they will notice me and found me creepy. Therefore, I put on the hood of my jacket and swiftly walk back on the room. Despite the brief chance to see her face again, I am satisfied and happy. It made my day at least. After a couple of minutes, the teacher arrived at the room and start another boring three hours.
Three in the afternoon, the bell ring again, which means it is time to home. Finally, I can have a break from this. I put my book and notebook that I would be needing inside of the locker and went outside of the room and leave the school. Unlike my classmates who have club activities after class which requires them to stay until evening, I don’t to any. Therefore, I always go home was the school bell rings.
I lived in this “posh” village in Makati, where my school is located. I can even see my house inside of the classroom. After at least ten minutes of walking, I already arrived home.
Once I arrived home, I immediately went to my bedroom, took a short shower, and put my typical home clothes. Wearing a hoodie jacket and jogging pants. I sit down in my study table and do my assignment first. After doing my assignment, I continue the drawing that I am doing earlier that was halted after interrupted by my classmate.
However, “Franz, let’s eat!”
I already heard my mom calling from the dining table to eat. I don’t feel eating yet, so I stayed in my bedroom and ignored it while she continued calling me. Trying to pretend not heard it. I am still struggling to get the details of Agatha’s face, her nose, lips, and the shape of her face. I wouldn’t be able to perfect it. The door opened and my sister immediately went inside of my territory.
“Kuya, we’re going to eat! Mom is calling you a lot of times.” My sister shouted.
I have no choice…
I dropped my pencil and stand up. I have no choice but to give in to mom, despite I don’t want to eat. I went downstairs and seat down in front of the dining table. I was wishing for a warm, hearty meal with soup. And I got what I want! The dinner for tonight is “(2)Pochero”. I can eat quite well because in the past few nights we are always eating “dry-fried foods” and takeout from fast-food chains.
My siblings went to the living room and watch T.V. while I wash the dishes and clean everything that we use. I was so frustrated that I cannot go back to my bedroom and continue what I am doing. After in the kitchen, I immediately went back to my room, seat down on my table, and continue drawing. After two excruciating hours of drawing the “Angel’s Face”, I finally finished it. I keep the things that I am going to use for school tomorrow. After this, I went to my bed and immediately sleep. I don’t bother to open my cellphone to check notifications and messages.
I wake up early again the other day. This is my life…
My life only revolves in school, and my house. I don’t deal with the complicated life of having club activities, social responsibility as a friend and even love life. I don’t have those! I prefer to be on my own, stay here in my bedroom the whole day and do everything that I want. Every time my classmates announcing a party every weekend, I would hide somewhere they wouldn’t see me and avoid everything. If they will ask me, I often say that I have something to do and check if I can and ended up not attending because it is such a waste to time.
Others might say that I have a boring life, but I am happy being like this. Maybe I am just used alone and have a quiet life drawing, painting, writing poems, and sometimes playing computer games. I am not excelling in the academic department, unlike my younger sister. Although I manage to have relatively good scores, nearly making me in the top 10 honors. However, I always fell short and I don’t care.
I would have some moments to like my classmates praise my artworks and do activities faster than expected. My day is complete seeing Agatha every day and have the chance to come across her. The important thing is I am not talking to her. I still felt a bit shy.
One ordinary and boring morning, I mean, it will be a happy day because today is my art class. Later, I am going to unleash my skills to prove that I am good at something.
Since I arrived at the school almost eight o’clock in the morning, I not used to come inside the room with a lot of people inside the room. While walking in the hallway, I saw an angel. Walking going in the opposite direction. Her straight, black hair, flying and bouncing beautifully despite running a bit fast. Her beautiful face, twinkling round brown eyes, and pale white skin mesmerizes me. I cannot stop looking at her despite she runs far away. I accidentally bumped one of my classmates.
“Hey! Be careful Franz. Good morning by the way!” greeting while smiling at me, this creeps me, but I just gave her a cringe smile.
“Don’t be like that! By the way, at least you’re smiling. I thought you can’t do that.” After praising me, she goes inside our room.
It was a bit shameful, but at least she didn’t get mad at me after bumping her.
I prayed, “Another monochromatic day of my life. I wish that this day would have a color like my artworks…” and go inside too.
The rang one November drowsy morning, I felt a bit exhausted after days of nearly not sleeping. If I am going to sleep, I am going to sleep for two to three hours. I slept like this because of the projects and intramural events. And I am the one who becomes in charge of the design of the booth. I don’t like it much but I have nothing to do because the put me there. I also participated in the poster making contest and got second place.
The bell rings, meaning it is a lunch break.
“Why this day is so boring?” my classmate whines loudly when the teacher was already outside of the room. They immediately went out to buy food and eat in the canteen.
Meanwhile, I was left here, alone! Which is the best thing ever! No more noisy and irritating classmates that will disturb my silent paradise. While I’m eating this dry fried chicken, I am busy drawing in the sketch pad.
Minutes had passed, my classmates came back to the room bit by bit. The silence of this room that I enjoyed for nearly thirty minutes had diminished. Good thing I can finish this drawing. However, I failed to finish my lunch. Instead of throwing it, I kept it back in my bag and pretend that this food doesn’t exist.
Meanwhile, my seatmate went to her seat and noticed what I have earlier. “You have barely eaten your food, but you brought it back to your bag. How come you will survive the rest of the afternoon classes if you haven’t eaten anything?” she worrying uttered while standing in front of her.
“You know what, I love drawing this “crap” than eating! I am more delighted to spend the rest of my day drawing, painting, and writing “unnecessary” stories and poems than eating, going to this crap school, and talking to people like you! I am minding my own business, even my mom doesn’t tell me what to do.”
Of course, I didn’t say that! I don’t have a will power to speak harshly to them. I keep my mouth shut and didn’t say anything. However, someone spoke in favor of me.
“Hey, Lil Mama! Shut up! He can do whatever he wants! If he doesn’t want to eat it is none of your business. You’re not the one who is going to be hungry anyway.” He said.
And they laughed hard after that. She just rolled her eyes and seat down to her seat.
“Franz forget her. We are a democratic and free country. You can do whatever you want.” Someone said in the front of the room.
The minutes of the laughing made me bored and stand up to go to my locker and took my books for the afternoon classes. While getting my things, a paper dropped on the floor. I pick it up and immediately close the locker. When I went back to my seat and open the folded paper that fell earlier.
“(3)Ola!” I wrote in beautiful cursive lettering.
I opened the envelope. What I saw is just a drawing of me, seating in this chair, looking at the window.
I don’t see any words from this paper, just this sketch. I saw our teacher enters the room. This “trash” inside, on the other hand, I throw in my bag and forget it. We first have our music class and after an hour my favorite subject will be the next art class.