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Burger King Night


10pm. Dark outside. Dad’s in the living room, watching reruns of McGuyver. He cusses at the tv.

Shet. Ang galing mo talaga! / Shit. You’re so good!

My sister and I are playing inside our room. (And by “our room,” I mean the only room in our one-bedroom apartment in the Westlake apartment complex.) She has a Barbie. I have a Polly Pocket. She’s on the inside corner of her lower bunk bed. I’m on mom and dad’s adjacent queen bed.

Lalalalala-LA! Lalalalala-LA! Lalalalala-LA! Yessss! (While dancing and singing)

Why are you so happy, ate?

Because today is TUESDAY. (Eyes big, half whispering)

Ooooohhhhh! TUESDAY! (She’s clueless. I can tell.)

(I smile)

What’s Tuesday? (Told ya)

Duuuhh! It’s Burger King night!

Ohhh yeaahhh! Yaaaaayyy!

She joins in the dancing with me.

10:30pm. We hear steps coming up the stairs leading to our apartment. You can’t see out the window from the room because the big bunk bed blocks most of it.  We hear the jingle of keys. She has hella keys, but we never really knew what they all opened. We shoot one look at each other, and Barbie and Polly didn’t have a chance. We threw the toys down to the floor and run out to the living room.

Mama! Mama! (both of us yelling, semi competing)

O. Kain na. / Eat now.

She still had her Burger King hat on, short curly hair tucked neatly with pins. Her makeup, applied carefully this morning, left faint traces on her face. Her collared shirt is blue, but faded. Black slacks, black shoes with scuff marks. She was beautiful.

One by one, she unwrapped our Tuesday night feast: two whoppers, a big fish burger, a cheeseburger, slightly stale (but still delicious) large fries, some onion rings, a chocolate shake, a strawberry shake, and some cokes.

My eyes were big. I must be the luckiest girl in the world! My stomach rumbled. Has it been rumbling this whole time?  10pm is late for dinner, but who cares. This was totally worth waiting for.

Mag-pray muna tayo. / Let’s pray first.

Bless us, Oh Lord, and these thy gifts which we are about to receive from thy bounty, through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

O sige na. Kain. / Go ahead. Eat.

Tuesday night is Burger King night. Thank you, Lord for the leftovers that Mama always brought home from work. I must be the luckiest girl in the world.

this post was written as a creative writing piece for babae’s pinay stories project.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Brandon permalink
    August.15.2009 12:39pm

    Thanks for sharing this… It brought back memories of not eating breakfast or lunch and also waiting for my mom to get home with McDonalds. We were called the fast generation because our parents were too tired to cook or at least that’s what I thought every family ate because their parents all worked Over Time.

  2. August.15.2009 12:43pm

    This story is so heartwarming. reminds me of the times when my grandpa would come home from working at McDonalds and he’s bring home cheeseburgers and happy meal toys. those were truly the best days ever. also makes me appreciate my family because they worked so hard just so that we would be happy in america. we too lived in a one bedroom apartment…with 7 people living in it. but like you, with so much family around, i also felt like the luckiest kid in the world.

  3. August.19.2009 9:59pm

    OMG..It looks superyummy. Your blog is mouth watering. Enjoyed going through it. Cheers 🙂

  4. Melissa permalink
    August.20.2009 12:29am

    can’t wait till you come out with a book of short stories and art pieces. i’m your first buyer 🙂

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