Pots, Faith and Photos: Rekindling Tiwi

I don’t know if it works for all, but I have a really blurry memory of my childhood. While some could vividly describe their first days in school for instance, I can barely remember how it was for me. I have come to accept that maybe some people are just gifted with photographic memories and story-telling skills while I have a gift of short-lived memory, if that is indeed a gift. Or in another attempt to explain my forgetfulness, maybe my memory has been suppressed while growing up, only remembering in parts and selectively.

Either way, some memories flash back once in a while — especially in what we call Dejavu.



The same happened when my mother, Yuri and I went to attend mass at St. Lawrence Parish in Tiwi, Albay last Sunday. We have planned to come after I got well from an unexpected illness in April, as a way of thanking God for the family’s wellbeing. While I am quite sure that I’ve been there before I found it hard to recollect images of the place in my head.



It took around an hour good for two jeepney rides from home. When we arrived there at 7 am and I saw the church’s facade, it slowly looked more familiar to me although no memories were flashing back. We came in and said a little prayer and soon, the mass began.


I noticed that a lot of people were still coming in even right after the mass, many of whom are also pilgrims. I don’t know for what reason but the smallish and not-so-grand church is popular with devotees. With the significant amount of people, souvenir shops also thrive outside the church. Many of whom sell pottery works, for which Tiwi is known.



Going home, I realised that having an issue with remembering past events can also come a blessing to me. Say: Had I remembered my first time going to that beautiful church, I wouldn’t be as excited to go — or perhaps I wouldn’t. It also gives me a chance to always feel mesmerised by things I see as if it’s the first time. It’s as if every day is a chance to discover life anew — it should be anyway.


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