the scent of March

The taste of Red Delicious apple and its crunchiness always remind me of my family’s last week in Bataan refugee camp. It was a few days after we received positive confirmation of our immigration status to America. It was only then that my mother shelled out a few extra dollars to afford a kilo of apples sold at the open market in the nearby 5th Neighborhood. We were certain of our departure date that in a few-day time, we definitely take an 8-hour road trip on a bus towards Manila and eventually take the airplane to America. Only with certainty that my mother decided to treat us the luxury of eating the American apples, as we only knew of it within such reference. However, just a few weeks prior to that one specially marked moment of my childhood in a refugee camp, my bothers and I had already savored this special fruit. We did not have much, just a small bite of an apple that was founded on the ancestral alter left by a random family who had recently left for America. Their house was emptied, and turned into a playground for us kids. That’s where we found our first treasure of the American fruit, and shared among ourselves. When my mother bought more than one apples for us, we were overly elated and savoring each bite like it was the last. Later on when we came to America, and our sponsor treated the family to a trip to Cub Foods, the local grocery store, we were astounded at the many kinds of apples available. I think that first week, all we wanted to do was eating apples for every single meal.


4 thoughts on “the scent of March

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