Time was when people associate town fiestas with attending mass, pigging out “from house to house,” chomping cotton candies, doing the rides and playing games at the carnival. But now people associate town fiestas with pigging out “from house to house,” going the ukay-ukay route, and back to pigging out again.
There wasn’t much good finds at this year’s mound of ukay-ukay. Still I managed to snatch three long sleeves that come in salmon pink, pewter gray and champagne. And there was this blinding white polo with superb button details but contained little black characters like those stenciled on Mahjong tiles. Much as I coveted it, I threw it back because I don’t want to be put in the same situation as my friend.
Let’s just call her Magda. An undisputed ukay-ukay queen, Magda is a fashionista who makes ukay of the whole universe if only to let her friends die of envy. One day she dangles before you a nice scarf she bought for P1 in Bukidnon; another day she fishes from her “UK” sundry bag a cardigan she bought for P10 somewhere in Cagayan de Oro. Another day...you get the point.
That balmy Wednesday afternoon, Magda was bound for Manila and was wearing a navy blue blazer. At Butuan airport's pre-dep, a foreigner approached her.
“From what branch?” the button hole-eyed foreigner said. The ever talkative Magda was taken aback, but only for a sec.
“Excuse me?” she said.
The foreigner smiled. “I’m from the same bank,” he said, gesturing a whole hand to the characters imprinted near the breast pocket of Magda’s blazer. “From what branch are you?”
“Oh, I’ve long retired,” Magda said and went straight to the comfort room.