And so I received flowers for the first time last Valentine’s Day. It’s no big deal really, except that, just moments before that, I was thinking of texting my friend Monica how I’ve never received flowers ever (but especially on Valentine’s Day), how I wonder how it feels to carry around three roses while trying not to blush (not that it’s a lot of work; I’m not mestiza, you know, ‘yung pag naarawan e nasusunog, hindi namumula, thank you), and how, excuse the cheesiness, I hope one day I’ll meet that someone who’ll give me flowers even if he thinks I won’t find it sweet at all but will give me flowers anyway, just because.
I never got to text Monica. I was busy looking with a tinge of (okay, a lot of) envy at the girls walking around the mall (my eyes zoom in on them almost naturally; I’ve worked in too many rom-com movies and telenovelas, my eyes were trained well), holding a red rose, three roses, a dozen, a bouquet of red and almost-red roses, three red roses with baby’s breath, three roses wrapped in fancy papel de hapon, that when I reached the bench near the ATM where he said he was and he gave me three roses wrapped in some very thin white paper (I don’t know how it’s called; I don’t want to call it papel de hapon, I’m judgmental like that), and said, “O, para sa’yo” like it’s just three roses wrapped in just papel de hapon, I’m sorry if I looked like I didn’t find it sweet.
And so, yeah, it is a big deal, it will always be a big deal, me receiving flowers, roses, or just flowers, I don’t care how you call it, basta bulaklak, for the first time, because it doesn’t seem like me. Then out of the blue, he says, “oks lang, parehas lang tayo”, ’cause truth is, it’s the first time he’s given anybody flowers, ever.
Then, my dear, now you understand, it becomes a much, much bigger deal.#