Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Remembering our Mentor

Our school might not have the best facilities, heck it may even look like a mental institution from the outside. But I had the best (and worst) experiences there that prepared me for the tough life in college.

In the past, I wasn't really proud of my school. I wasn't ashamed of it, but I didn't brag about it like the other members of my family who were from a famous school in Marikina. In fact most of them looked down on the school because it severely lacked the amenities that their schools had. Who could blame them? We didn't have a covered court, air-conditioned libraries, spacious fields, and what's left of the few trees in the campus were cut down because of termite infestation. But they didn't know the hell that we go through with academic requirements and extracurricular activities (that didn't seem optional) every year. From preschool to high school, nobody was spared. Daily lessons with pop quizzes, long tests with project deadlines, two theses (for 4th year HS), and plays, recitals, and whatnot on the side.

We had teachers who throw soldering projects from the second floor just to see if it holds and if it does, it means you cheated. We had no boundaries between girls and boys when it comes to projects and classes; girls learn about electronics with the boys and the boys learn to sew with the girls. We were taught equally without prejudice and special treatments. I guess this started my belief in equal opportunity (mind you, EQUAL not special treatments. NOT feminism).

Honestly, even when I was cursing the school for giving us "too much work" in our stay there I am quite thankful because it prepared me for college. I didn't have to adjust with the multiple deadlines and sleep-deprived school days. I learned how to multitask before my peers even heard of the word. Going to college seemed like a breeze because of the fundamentals and all the grinding we experienced in school.

Although my school is not as popular as the others surrounding it, it has produced well-mannered and capable individuals who are ready to face the hardships ahead. From the proper intonation of saying "good morning" to changing a florescent light to submitting perfect "plates" to writing a script, choreographing field demonstrations, cooking your own lunch, and properly addressing and thanking the canteen ladies and janitors. You taught us all these and more.

I might not have been the closest student to you. To be honest I was one of those kids who were hiding from you when you pass by. We feared that we will bleed ourselves dry just speaking to you. I know better now. I should've known better then.

So to the woman who made all these possible, I know you are resting in God's able hands. I'll take this opportunity to say this to you:

Goodbye and thank you, Mrs. Mallonga. Jesus. Loves. You.

This is a simple greeting taught to us by our mentors, gradually forgotten in our older years. But this best describes our respect and gratitude towards you. You can rest in peace knowing that we have imbibed the motto you instilled in all of us; do the right thing, at the right time, in the right place, with the right person and everything will turn our right.

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