Wednesday, March 6, 2013


I instantly fell in love with singer-songwriter Dan Mangan the moment I heard his song "The Indie Queens are Waiting" on 8tracks. Tonight I'm listening to his playlist, and gleefully drowning myself in the stories he tells in every song. There has not been one song that I did not like (I've listened to a total of five now!). Every song just sounds like a beautiful postcard letter from a faraway, interesting stranger sharing his feelings and encounters with the world. To someone who is as tired as I am after a long day at work, THIS is the best therapeutic escape I've had since Sims 3 was installed in my laptop over a month ago. 

His song 'Basket' is so poignant and deep (I used to be so young, how did I get so old?), it made me want to learn why and how it was written. Dan tells that it is an ode to his grandfather, and that basket is a metaphor to life and how, growing up, we fill it with our individual treasures that make us who we are--experiences, stories, etc. As the basket 'falls apart' (we grow old), we also try to hold on to everything which we have cherished all our days, our memories.

Then, I was reminded me of my grandfather. He passed away when I was still very young, but I can fondly recall how he would carry me onto his lap when I come to him crying (every time my brother bullies me..hehe), he would hum a happy tune, and he'd tell me that everything will be all right. I can remember how I would pretend to be sleeping on the sofa just so he would carry me to the bed and tuck me in. Mom says I was his favorite grandchild.

He was a very gifted craftsman, my lolo. I would watch him build things in the backyard just outside our room. Sometimes, I would tinker with his tools and try to create something out of leftover wood. Our house and most of our furniture were built with love by his hands. He also built an apartment for my grandmother, which still stands today, and has become a source of income for grandma. Lola says  my grandfather was a very detailed and street-smart man. He knew where to get supplies for his craft, and he could easily source them because people trusted his work and his character.

Here with lola, lolo, mommy, siblings, and my cousin, little Erwin.

I'm proud  of my grandfather. He was a carpenter, and he made beautiful things in his lifetime. He truly enjoyed woodworking and, as a lover of handmade creations myself, I believe that part of him still lives in me.

He is one of the people who I will be holding in the basket I carry around with me----that special basket I place beside me everytime I sit down to create something beautiful, and which, I bring anywhere else with me, especially when I'm out catching stars.

If he were alive today, he'd be ecstatic to build me my own sewing table. I'd love every detail of it.  :)

What labor-of-love memories and dreams do you carry in yours? :)

With handmade love,