Ate left for the church to attend mass this afternoon. Its her birthday today, and like previous birthdays for as long as i can remember, she’s the type of person who takes days-off on these special days. Ako din naman. Who would want to work during one’s birthday anyway? Well, in our house, birthdays are synonymous to cookfests so i expect to be helping her out in a few minutes when she returns from picking out cj from school and buying potatoes for the salad.
she was doing the laundry this morning when the company VP called, passing on to her some bad news. One of her subordinates just handed his resignation letter today. The VP was known for his foul temper and even fouler mouth, and its not hidden from ate’s knowledge that people in the office cringe and duck for cover whenever VP foulmouth is drunk and swerving along the office premises. This has always been the case even when tatay was still alive and working there, too.
This hasn’t been the first resignation this week. The first one to hand a resignation letter was also her subordinate, and she suspects that the VP is one of the (big) reasons for them to be looking for new jobs, aside from seeking advancement in monetary terms too. She told me in an irked fashion that it falls on her to find replacements for those two, and fast. The company isn’t that big to be having a formal Human Resource Department so it kinda fell on her as the head accountant to do these things that concern the work she’s doing.
A little later, Jay, the subject of the VP and ate’s phone conversation called to formalize his resignation. Ate handled it well, telling Jay to recommend people who he might think would want to apply for the job, and to tell his new employer to give him at least a month to train whoever will be hired as his replacement. After the call i asked her if Jay or the VP knew it was her birthday. She said yes. It seems people do not really care for anything except their own worries.
I remember looking at an old poster hanging at her bedroom wall when i was still a kid. When we moved to our new home the poster got lost and was never seen again. It contains the poem Desiderata, and she quoted a line to me just moments ago, from what she suspects came from the poem: “nothing can ever disturb my peace”. Or something like that. And then she laughed. Declaring that today is her birthday, she will continue an unruffled existence no matter what.
As she was saying this, bits and pieces from a conversation of not too long ago pierced my mind : “hindi pa rin ako nakakarecover hanggang ngayon sa sinabi mo sa akin”, she said, her voice cracking over the phone; referring to the day i told her i am gay.