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Home Columns Parables A Parable of the Cunning-and-Crafty Child of an Oragon Peasant
A Parable of the Cunning-and-Crafty Child of an Oragon Peasant PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - Parables
Written by Bobby M. Reyes   
Saturday, 05 February 2011 13:05

 

By Lolo Bobby M. Reyes

Sorsogon City, PHP, and West Covina, CA

 

D uring the Spanish regime, a wealthy scion of a Spanish clan in the Bicol Region had the bad habit of forcing beautiful daughters of his tenants to serve in his household as maids. The descendant of a Peninsulares immigrant was married to a beautiful Manileña, who was also an Insulares. But the couple did not have any child of their own.

 

The landlord had been forcing – often with the use of bribes or outright threat of kicking their peasant families out of the hacienda – many of his maids as his unwilling sex partners. He managed to keep it a secret from his equally-rich wife.

 

Then the landlord heard of Maria, a child of one of his peasants. She was reputedly the most-beautiful maiden in the province, if not in the region.

 

So, one day, the landlord went to the peasant and told the farmer that he wanted to hire his daughter as one of his maids. The landowner said that the tenant owed him so much money in cash advances that if he refused, he would be forced to call in the Guardia Civil and arrest him for unpaid debts. The farmer said that the landlord would have to ask the daughter if she was willing to work for him as a maid.

 

The daughter refused the offer. The landlord said that he would simply ask her to play a game of picking a white stone out of two small bags. If she picks up the black stone, she would work for him and he would forgive all the debts of her father. If she picks the white one, she would be free to reject his employment offer but her family’s debts would still be forgiven.

 

The offer was tempting. The daughter agreed but she said that she would go first to the house to answer a call of nature. Inside the house, the daughter removed her top underwear, leaving her solely with a “Camiso Chino” (Chinese shirt or blouse) that almost exposed the beauty of her virgin breasts.

 

While waiting for the daughter to return, the landlord put a black stone each in both bags – without the farmer or his kin noticing it. Then she came back. The landlord asked her pick a bag.

 

She hesitated, as if she was reluctant in choosing a bag to pick. But she was in a bending position, which exposed more to the landlord’s eyes her breasts. He was now staring at her breasts instead of looking at the bags that he held.

 

She picked a bag and got the stone. But then she dropped it quickly into a pile of many pebbles, some of which were white in color, with the other gravel consisting of black, gray and dark-gray stones. The landlord could not tell where the stone dropped, as his eyes were riveted to the girl’s breasts.

 

The peasant’s child apologized for being clumsy, as she said that she was nervous. But then she said that even if they could not tell the color of the stone she dropped or where it fell, they could easily tell the color of the other stone in the remaining bag. Naturally, when the landlord was forced to open it, it revealed a black stone inside it.

 

And so, the girl rejected the offer of being hired as a maid in the landlord’s household and all the debts of her father were forgiven.

 

The landowner went away.

 

Will a Second Time Be a Charm?

 

M onths passed and again the girl’s father accumulated more debts to the landlord, as there were several ailments in the peasant family. And the farmer’s daughter was getting more beautiful and sexier.

 

After a couple of years, the landlord returned to the peasant. He had the same offer but he said that the selection of the bag would now be in a spot free of other stones and debris. He ordered his farm supervisor to clean a spot in the farmer’s backyard. He also requested that the daughter wear a thicker blouse and button it up all the way to the neck. (He wanted to focus on the bag selection and not be distracted by the girl’s physical attributes.)

 

The peasant-farmer agreed and so did the daughter. But unknown to the landlord, the farmer had been teaching his children the sleight-of-hand trick and other “magic” ploys for the past two years. Yes, the farmer was an “oragon,” which is the Bicolnon term for excellence in any undertaking. The peasant had the foresight of the landlord coming back, giving the same offer and doing the same stone trick. Perhaps, the peasant was the Bicolnon’s equivalent of Houdini.

 

The selection was quickly done and the daughter produced a white stone – much to the surprise of the landlord. Again, the landowner went away without the girl being hired as his maid and all the family’s debt forgiven.

 

Many more months passed. The landlord’s wife fell ill and died in a hospital in Manila where she was taken. The landlord returned to the hacienda as a sad widower and apparently also ailing – as he was fat and diabetic.

 

A “Doble Cara” of a Coin

 

U nknown to the peasant’s family, the landlord had obtained from a foundry in Manila a Mexican silver peso with both sides having the same face (that of a Spanish queen).

 

So, he went back to the farmer and his daughter. He repeated the same offer but now it would be done with a toss of the Mexican coin. The landlord would throw it up on the air. If it landed with the face (cara) of the Spanish monarch, the landlord would win. If the back side with a cross (cruz) comes up, the daughter could reject the employment and still the family’s debts to the landowner would be forgiven.

 

The daughter suggested that if the landowner really likes her, then he should simply marry her – for he was now a widower. The landlord said that it was not as simple as that, considering that she came from the ranks of the peasants and he belonged to the elite.

 

Then she suggested that if the coin would land upright, then the landlord should marry her. She said that it was a sign of approval from heaven of their union. The landowner smiled for he thought that it was impossible for a coin to land upright. He agreed and consented further to toss the coin inside the farmer’s hut.

 

The landlord did not realize that the floor of the peasant’s hut was composed of bamboo slats with almost a quarter of an inch space in between them. The odds were for the coin to be caught upright in one of the spaces.

 

And so the tossing of the coin was done and indeed it got caught in one of the spaces. It stood upright.

 

To make the long story shorter, a grand wedding was held between the landlord and the peasant’s daughter. The biggest wedding reception in the province's history was held at the landowner’s hacienda.

 

The Honeymoon Night

 

T he newly-wed couple spent the first night at the landowner’s home, which was the biggest house in the town. There were lots of singing and more joyful noises that came from the couple’s bedroom during that first night.

 

Later that night, the bride summoned the mayordomo (head servant) to fetch the town’s physician for her husband was having an apparent heart attack.

 

The landlord was breathing his last gasps when the physician arrived. Indeed the landowner suffered a fatal heart attack. Soon, the town held the biggest funeral in memory. But now the farmer’s daughter was the widow and she was the sole heir of the hacienda and owner of all its assets.

 

E pilogue. After a year of mourning, the widow married her childhood sweetheart, a Filipino Indio. At their honeymoon night, he found to his surprise that the bride was still a virgin. He asked her how it did happen when she had a boisterous wedding night with the late husband of a landlord. She explained that she told him (the first husband of a landlord) that if he could catch her, then she would do him oral sex. Thus, she said his chasing her all over the big master’s bedroom accounted for all the noises and his suffering a fatal heart attack. # # #

 

 


Last Updated on Monday, 09 May 2011 15:05
 
Comments (1)
1 Thursday, 19 May 2011 12:42
mabuhay
I almost choked laughing. Great style and narrative, Bob! Garo ako nagbasa nin istoryang suanoy ni Lola Basyang, with exceptional wit and humor. This is virtually an opus, Bob! Great! Share it with the UBLA people.

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