Part 1 of January 2001
The De La Paz reunion is composed of 4 families who have links with Teresa de la Paz. These 4 clans are the Tuason, Valdes, Prieto and Legarda. The history on how the 4 came together can be traced back in the 19th century…Teresa’s 1st husband was Don Severro Tuason. Teresa married again to Benito Legarda….their daughters married a Prieto and a Valdes. These families became very close resulting to several intermarriages within the clans.
The 1st Reunion was held on the early 80’s at ADMU(not sure though)…the 2nd reunion was held on CSA then the 3rd was at DLSZ, the fourth(2001) on CSA again then last year was the fifth reunion which was held on ADMU. An average of 400+ attend the reunion every time it was held.
Among all of the De La Paz reunions, the fourth was the most memorable for me. Here are the reasons why….
- No one was absent
The 1st time in a reunion that we were complete from my grandfather’s side and it was only the 3rd time it happened during my lifetime. Though the other times, I was very young to remember or enjoy. All my uncle and aunts were there plus all of my 1st cousins. It was also great to see everyone since all of us were grown-ups (Tessa and I were the youngest). We had so much fun during the reunion. We even had dinner after the event at Greenbelt…funny thing was all of us were wearing the same shirt with Legarda name printed on our right sleeves. The next days after the reunion, we continued to have some gatherings before the 2nd envelope of the impeachment and even after EDSA II. My 1st cousins went to Boracay however Tessa and I didn’t go because of school but classes were suspended because of EDSAII so Tessa and I used to walk to the EDSA Shrine from our house to rally.
- 1st time to meet Valerie and Simone
On that day was the 1st time I met Valerie and Simone. During that time, none of my cousins were engaged but Andro and Miguel brought their girlfriends for the 1st time in the Philippines so that they can introduce them to us. Raymond Mohica, the husband of my sister, was also present. We knew it was only a matter of time till my cousins get married and soon enough during that year we heard wedding bells from Andro, Tricie and Denise then Mig and Manolet the next year.
- My 1st official football game
It was a game I almost scored even though I didn’t play well. Up to now I just can’t imagine how the hell the goalie saved my shot since he was on the ground at that time then he made a slide kicking the ball outward just in time before the ball cross the goal line.
- Nationalism and the week before Edsa II
Our reunion was on the eve of Edsa II so we were in a serious mood even though we were celebrating and having fun. I can see in the eyes of many of my relatives that they were patriotic and concerned about the future of our country. Personally I was very involved in the struggle during the Erap’s regime….having gone thru many rallies organized by La Salle and UST. It was something I had to keep a secret from my parents and to some of my relatives. My mum even suspected me to be a communist before hehehe. Then on the reunion, I saw many of my relatives who were involved in the Civil Society against Erap. One of them was the lady that Miriam sent out while watching the impeachment trial…something that made Miriam more infamous. During that day, everybody was comforting her and congratulating her for the bravery. Some of the heads of the opposition were also present.
One of the best moments of the reunion was when Kuh Ledesma sang “Bayan Ko”…it was very emotional and some were standing and raising their left hand, a symbol of protest. It really touched me that our family was concerned about our nation…you will never see that with the other reunions here in the Philippines.
- Miguel’s Performance with Manuel
Every family had to present during the reunion and for the Legarda’s it was Miguel Ayesa who is my 1st cousin and Manuel Legarda who is my 2nd cousin. Miguel was fresh from his Dubai performance for “Pokemon” as Ash???(I cant believe he was Ash but still better than Pikachu). Manuel was nominated for the best guitarist award in the Philippines a month ago before the event. Miguel used his Piano and sang 3 or 4 songs including a song he dedicated for Manila. Everybody enjoyed his presentation plus he was also very funny and charismatic, a trademark of Mig. He was the big celebrity in the reunion.