The heavy rain had been falling for hours. It started raining the night before and it hasn't stopped since. No one saw the sun that day - it hid behind the clouds. The gray world was suffused with diffused sunlight. It was a cold day, too, and although it was marginally warmer than the colder night before, it was still cold enough for anyone to see their breaths when they exhaled.
The classroom was empty, and so was the school pentagon. The dim hallways, with their high ceilings and explosion of shades of dark grays and stark blacks became as haunting as the rumors and stories that circulated around the school. The wooden classroom doors' creaks were gunshots in the silence. Except for the rain rhythms, everything was eerily quiet, quieter than the mornings when sun shafts speared through all the gaps they can to pool warmth and light on the cool cement floors. During those days, the Brownian dust dance illumined by the sun were sufficient to ensnare attention and the senses. That was enough to while the time away. They were nowhere to be seen then. Only the cobwebs, gray and grayer, presented themselves for company. They were enjoying the idle breeze that occasionally came and caressed them. The cobwebs were too high up to look at for minutes on ends, and too dirty to toy with, and so they were left unsullied, or at least they were allowed to sully themselves more by their own accord in their own time hanging from their own place.
All but one desk were unmoved, not a fan was turned on(it was raining after all), and the blackboard's green was untouched, unspotted, and unstained. If it could, the whole classroom would probably savor the time it had left before the chaos of first grade children could spur its innards into a great disarray. The books on the shelf were left alone this time, they had been read from cover to cover already, and they had nothing more to offer other than echoes of past delights, each repeat diminishing the novelty and joy and surprise it had in store. Familiarity breeds contempt, does it not? The whole scene had become all too familiar to offer anything else beside the threadbare comfort of familiarity itself. It's quite ironic, come to think of it. When there is nothing new to break the monotony, to spur crests higher and carve troughs deeper, then the only choice left is to make do with what highs and lows there are, and look forward to each repeating ascent and live through each repeating descent.
The heavy rain had been falling for hours. The classroom was empty, and so was the school pentagon. All but one desk were untouched, not a fan was turned on(it was raining after all), and the blackboard's green was untouched, unspotted, and unstained. There is nothing new to break the monotonous wait, and so the gaze is directed through the open windows and the hands rest on the cold windowsill in anticipation of the arrival of a familiar face. There is no choice but to wait.
The year was 1998, and on that cold June morning, I first felt profoundly alone in Bohol.