Mga Imbak na Marka: thank you

Here is a farewell to a no stranger at all!

We surely had a share of personal accounts on meeting people who would eventually make impact on our lives. 

Stories of strangers whose relationships blossomed into friendships and vice versa have never been a rarity. There is always a room for endless tales of how people, and yes – strangers, have significantly made us feel better about ourselves.

While at the beautiful Parola beach for a family outing yesterday, my Mama Badang sent me an sms asking me whether the news about someone has reached me. The follow up text disheartened me: “She is now wid d Lord. (sic)”

Ms. Lilian Bellen is now reunited with the Creator. 

My connection with Ma’am Lilian commenced when she sent me this remark at the messenger, saying:

Hi, this is Lilian.  What do you prefer I call you?  Chanced upon your blog and was blown away.  It is fantastic… Am I the only one who does not know about your blog?  Thanks. 

For a no serious blogger whose only goal is to write on one’s personal views and sentiments and create an online repository for my penchant for Bicol oral traditions, her message is an affirmation that maybe, just maybe, I was doing right.

Receiving comments from readers is always an engaging and thrilling experience. A feed to the blogger’s ego, one might say. But a compliment from Ms. Lilian Bellen is both an honor and a privilege.

This lady is never an ordinary random Facebook friend who would send you pm on sundry of stuff from chain messages to “please like this” thing! I have known her in an FB group whose goal is to create an avenue for civic-minded people to discuss plans and concrete schemes in improving the lives of Magalleños. Her posts and updates have always been about believing in people and their potential of making our town… and this country a better one for the generation to come. Her optimism is always dynamic and has transcended beyond mere words and social media statuses. 

Her love for Magallanes and her kahimanwas has always been constant. Her social media updates, especially those posted in the group, revealed her vision and aspirations for a better Magallanes. One appeal I recall with feeling of regret for having done nothing is this message she sent me.

Hi, Alfred, I posted this to the Pro Mag page.  Would you help us, please.  Thanks. APPEAL: LET US HONOR THE OUTSTANDING MEN AND WOMEN OF MAGALLANES. . . and OUTSTANDINGSCIENTIFIC RESEARCH PAPERS

Pro Mag would like to appeal to members to  enrich the content of this page with posts about (1)  the outstanding men and women of Magallanes, the unsung heroes ,   the cheerful provider of services , the gifted “langgang specialist,” etc.; and (2) scientific  researches/projects.   

We understand that there is an annual or periodic award to Outstanding Women of Magallanes.  We hope  someone will take the initiative to write up or summarize the citation for each awardee.  Many members do not know the debt of gratitude we owe these women so publishing their citation would show our appreciation and introduce them to the unaware.

We also hope that researches about innovative or more efficient use of our resources could be posted.  There may be readers  who  will see the investment possibilities in those researches.  Sayang tabi an opportunidad.  Let us not underestimate the potential of such researches, e.g., deboning bangus may be simple, but  a good commercial enhancer.    There will be no patent or  copyright infringement if disclosures are on general terms. 

Salamatononon tabi.

(Sent: May 9, 2014; 11:54 AM)

She celebrates Magalleños’ stories of success and echoed the same in the social media so that we’d be more aware and appreciative of our potentials and strength as a people. She always reserves a slot for making us feel good and proud about who we are as Magalleños in her social media space… and I love her for that.

For that, I have realized she’s no stranger at all. She’s one of us by will and heart.

Our online connection continued as she considered my school assignment as beneficiaries of a good number of books and encyclopedia she altruistically solicited and donated for our school library.  It happened not just once. In fact, our last conversation on April 18 this year, is rooted from the same cause. (She’d be again sending books and encyclopedia  for Bagatao which we respectfully turned down since we’ve just got a new set of donation from Mr. & Mrs. Jinky Bailon).

To our students, Ms. Lilian Bellen is the anonymous book donor. But her generosity never gets unnoticed. Her love for learning and her vision of uplifting the lives of our people through education will surely go a long way and eventually bear fruit. And for that I thank her again. And yes, I love her for that…

But this blog post, who is not even fit to be a eulogy to a wonderful creation – that is Lilian Bellen, is something that is very personal.

By the way, did I say our connection began when she sent me a pm in 2013? I was awfully wrong. Here is why.

Thanks to Ma’am Ruby Cabug for disclosing this supposedly confidential fact: Ma’am Lilian was my benefactor in Carracal Memorial Academy since I transferred in as a second year high school student on June 1997. I’ve learned I was randomly selected as her scholar.

Allow me to share  screenshots of one very personal conversation I had with my dear Mam Lilian as I expressed my gratitude to her… as I told her how her act of selflessness has made me a grateful person that I am now and how it has changed me… and the lives of the people around me. 

I am blessed to have an opportunity of telling her how I am thankful for her help. My life is eternally blessed to be touched by a no stranger who is Ma’am Lilian. 

Rest now, dear stranger who has become an angel to me and to many others… It is time be home where you truly belongs – heaven!

Again, thank you. Until we finally meet.