mama

A tribute to my mother

My mother Editha

My mother Editha

I still vividly remember when I was 14 years old, I got a dressing down from my mother Editha. Although I can no longer remember her words, our house helper reported me to my mom after she found bus tickets thrown outside my room’s window.

A day before, I traveled alone to Mantayupan Falls in Barili at the southwestern side of Cebu. I hopped on a bus, relying on a mental map of the succession of towns along the way, memorized and counted off as referenced from a map of Cebu that has always been in my room and alighted when I reached my destination. It was my first time to visit that place and the first time I’ve actually seen a waterfall albeit with a low volume of water, almost dried up.

Although my mother is not as well traveled as compared to me and my father, during her childhood, she used to accompany my lolo (grandfather) aboard his light blue Impala with its flared behind, hard and uncomfortable seats and wide body, off to some places in Cebu for business. She married a taxi driver from Mindanao who soon after his maritime studies would eventually sail the world, with my mother, the housewife, left at home in Cebu for months at a time over the span of more than three decades, raising three children. The farthest she has gone to is Singapore and just a few places in the country.

On the other hand, I had my college education in Metro Manila and had to uproot myself from Cebu only to return during Christmas and summer vacations. Except for a brief two years of working in my home province, I relocated to Mindanao and eventually to Metro Manila to work and it’s only from time to time that I go home to Cebu.

Fast forward two decades later, with me based outside of my home province and frequently on the road somewhere, perhaps, its exasperation on her part, or she has long accepted that her eldest son will always wander, travel and get lost, that she has always reminded me three things:

1) to always take care of myself
2) to be safe when I am out there and 
3) always pray

Ad nausem.

But when I do arrive back in Cebu, she’s there to welcome me home. My mother was the one who comforted me as I arrived crying and hugging her like a child when my father passed away in 2006 and whenever I am fetched or sent off at the airport, she’s there even if its before the break of dawn or way past midnight.

 But that is my mother and I think loving mothers always do that.

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.

4 Comments

  1. Estan Cabigas (@EstanCabigas)
    May 7, 2015 @ 22:21

    A tribute to my mother: My mother Editha I still vividly remember when I was 14 years old, I got a dressing do… http://t.co/EVKlrY92qd

  2. Estan, Ang Langyaw (@LangyawMedia)
    May 10, 2015 @ 11:09

    A travel blogger’s tribute to his #mom. Happy Mother’s Day! http://t.co/IeDvfeDce1 http://t.co/VPD70crjn6

  3. Nina
    August 19, 2015 @ 22:43

    This is so sweet Estan!

    Whenever I come home from a long trip, especially if it was out of the country, my mother would always cook sinigang on the day of my arrival <3

  4. estan
    August 19, 2015 @ 23:17

    Thanx Nina. Mothers always know how to comfort us travelers 🙂

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