Friday, June 1, 2007


If you can figure that out, hats off to you! That was actually the nickname that our former houseboy/girl insisted we call him/her. His real name was simply Raul; he was dark skinned, tall, and very skinny (19” waist!). He was such a hilarious character- he would always insist he is the younger sister of Carmina Villaroel (since they both had the same last name). He would gleefully scream when he saw Carmina on the TV screen during commercials, and would always refer to her as “Ate Carmina” when discussing new info about his “sister”.

He described their house (he was from the hometown of my grandmother) as similar to a train- long and narrow. He would always dazzle me, my brothers, and my cousins stories of his outrageous conquests. The “Bachini” and “Jopello” from his nickname above were derived from our two hunky next door neighbors.

Like any debutante, Rhaulyn mae (don’t make me type the entire nickname, I beg of you) would get out of the gate to “sweep” dried leaves from the driveway. He of course, had a “balls-eye view” of the guys playing basketball (we were the corner lot and the ring was nailed at the Leyeco post fronting our gate). After which, he sits demurely and watches his crushes get sweaty.

He was obsessed with Wowee (circa the 90’s) and the Universal Motion Dancers. He and my cousin would always do their latest dance moves. He stayed with us for only a year, and had to go home to finish high school (good for him!). He sent us a funny letter saying that he wouldn’t be able to visit us because “my moder angry me”, according to him. And that he was planning to go to manila “togeder wit the UMD”.

I guess the reason why I am writing about him is that he embodies a characteristic most PLUs have- despite the hardships of life one can still manage to be cheerful and jolly. Last I heard, Rhaulyn was working as a “sales lady” (his preferred job title), and wears his hair to his shoulders and four inch heels to the market where he sells dry goods. Work it girl!

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