D has been on sem break for several weeks now so we decided to go early to visit our departed ones. The ashes of his father who died 3 years ago in Seattle are buried in a crypt beside the Loreto Church in Sampaloc. It is a small yet intimate enclosure so it doesn't get as crowded as in the public cemeteries.
Sad to say I never met his father in person but from the stories I've heard about him, he seemed like a jolly fun person who lived life to the fullest until he passed away at the ripe old age of 95 years old.
The remains of my grandparents on both sides are located in cemeteries that are simply too far for us to visit. I know it is only once a year but frankly I don't really do well in crowds so I deem it is best I avoid these kinds of situations.
I remember my maternal grandparents quite fondly. Though they were quite strict, they were the epitome of good moral values. They taught us to be God fearing individuals who must be respectful, value the dignity of everyone and understand that the family is the most important unit of society.
During past holidays, several generations would all gather in the ancestral house to partake a hearty meal with lengthy conversations peppered with laughter. My grandmother would arrange all her Spanish inspired dishes on the large dining table adorned with her fine china and silver cutlery. We would all eat till we would burst. It was so much fun. I really miss those reunions.
Nowadays, my cousins are all living in different far flung locations it is quite rare that we all get together during holidays. I guess times have changed, the present generation are composed of smaller units who celebrate with their immediate family. I only get to see them through pictures they post on their FB. I guess what's important is that we still adhere to the dictates of our grandparents.