Where to begin?
At the beginning? From my birth?
My parents are from the Philippines and I acknowledge there is a whole wealth of knowledge, and culture, and life histories that contributed to who I am.
But reciting from memory, I feel like I don’t know a lot.
A short and incomplete list off the top of my head:
The Aswang. Lapu-Lapu. 400 Years of Spanish Oppression. The Marcos Dictatorship followed by a remarkable in its miracle of non violence People Power Revolution. Chocolate Soup. Eating a duck egg.
A smattering of embarrassing to my own ears Tagalog.
I’ve been complimented for my Tokyo accented Japanese but here I am. A world where a deceptively young looking and simultaneously matronly Filipino woman clicks her tongue, shakes her head, and simply says, “Sayang.”
The only thing I really know is how I got to where I am now. That part is the only reliable part. So the beginning.
Which I guess means what I know about my parents.