not-so-manic monday

Here we go…

It’s Monday again, another start of the work grind cycle. But wonder of wonders! I am (almost) happily cruising through my shift. I am actually grinning. And I know not from where these good vibes are coming from. Mayhap this is hormonal?

Well, whatever it is, I like this sort of lightness, which is akin to bubbly-feely, bordering on fluffy bunnyish.

Oh, Faith turned four yesterday. It is something that the entire familia is grateful for. We had a little party for the little one. Her proxy grandmiere bought her a dress and she insisted on wearing it the entire time (dragging dust at the racetracks for our annual Ligiron grand prix race) and even going to bed wearing it. Faith said she likes the dress because it made her look like a princess. This morning, I finally managed to make her change her clothes for something more play appropriate.

Speaking of the Ligiron race, it’s now become an annual thing.

This year, we had eight riders who competed for the championship cup. The race was pseudo supercross, pitting two riders at a time and eliminating the slower rider until only one dominates in the final heat.

For those not familiar with what a ligiron is, it’s a four-wheeled contraption assembled from a rag-tag collection strips of wood, scraps of rubber, and thin planks of bamboo. The wheels are constructed from pieces of thick plywood and treaded with strips of old tire treads. These materials are whipped to shape with a few strikes of a hammer on rusty nails, and voila! a rustic riding contraption is born! The closest thing I can compare what happens in a Ligiron race is the American soap box derby, but in a more exotic locale and with indigenous materials for the vehicle.

The standard lubricant to keep the ligiron’s wooden axles going was cacao (Theobroma cacao) pulp. However, modernity has caught up with the mountain folks, and this time, it’s good old grease that makes the ligirons reach speeds of 60 km/h on a downhill ride.

That, with a strong sense of adventure and honest to goodness guts qualify you to be a rider.

Risks are higher, with the potential for splinters to the ligiron disintegrating upon landing. It is more frightful to crash against another ligiron made out of bamboo slats while it’s being driven at 45-60 km/h than colliding against an alloyed bicycle in downhill cycling heats. Fortunately, nothing like that happened yesterday.

And the tracks (made by Tata and his barkada) by the way, wound around coconut groves, through forests of bracken, a field of boulders, and then led the rider up a dirt jump that suddenly drops 30 feet down the forest floor before reaching the finish line, which is, to suit the tropical jungle surroundings, fashioned out of an abaca (Musa textilis) trunk.

The riders were thirteen- to sixteen-year olds and their driving skills continued to amaze me. I took some videos (and photos too) that I’ll be posting on my multiply site soon.

As it was Faith’s birthday, every race participant and most of the spectators were the guests to the small agape meal that we had.

It was a fun weekend. I guess it’s what’s fueling my Monday good vibes.

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