This one is for Boj — rockin’ the world over at Chicago, Illinois.
I am the product of four families — the Perez, the Santiago, the Alhambra and the Langcauon. Perez and Alhambra birthed my father, and Santiago and Langcauon birthed my mother. Of these four lines, the Alhambra has been the most mysterious to me. But with today having been my grandmother’s 80th birthday celebration, the veil has been lifted a bit.
I met a lot of the Alhambras for the first time today, although we didn’t go much beyond curt introductions. For most of the afternoon, my cousin Patrick (the one behind me in the thumbnail) and I scouted the line and began wondering about where we got certain traits. We spotted some unique features we never associated with the Perez line such as tall height, light skin, and thin faces. The Perezes are often medium in height, with medium dark skin tones and round faces.
(Click the picture on the right for a larger view of the Perezes)
I even thought of a metaphor at one point and my current students will probably get this one — if the Perez line is like Mahayana Buddhism, the Alhambra line is like Theravada. Figure it out. 🙂
Personality-wise, Patrick and I figured that our loud, boisterous and humorous nature is definitely a Perez trait, while the silent and focused resoluteness is clearly Alhambra. (Although Lolo was extremely reserved, wasn’t he?) Either that, or we were all just shy. Regardless, this trait found its way to me, and together with the sardonic humor of the Santiagos (my mom and aunts can be very mean jokers), you’ve got me.
Anyway this was a really interesting afternoon and I hope to learn more about the Alhambras. There is currently a genealogy project going on and I’d like to see how far back I can trace my family.
There has always been a puzzle we wanted to solve — where did we get our Chinese-like features? While we’ve seen some Spanish traces in the Alhambra, it has always remained a quandary why every now and then, a Korean or Chinese person would be born into the Perez clan. There are Chinese-like features in my mother’s side as well, but they aren’t as pronounced as in my father’s side. This intrigues me a lot — I may still be able to fulfill my dream of being Emperor! Heh.
Happy birthday again, Lola! You have lived a rich and wonderful life as reflected through your children. May the next years be as wonderful!