Sunday, June 24, 2012

Aragon/Casile Grounds

Originally, Once entering the gates, you would have been under the canopy of a huge suha tree.  To the right and where the canopy ended would have been a pond and grotto of Mother Mary.  Straight ahead after  where the formal dining area would have ended inside towards the kitchen started the garage.  This garage was big enough to house the karols(procession floats) of Mary and Jesus during Holy week.  I also remember a hammock and a bench in there where my Lolo loved to nap during the heat of the day.  This garage is gone.
Past the garage and the well was the kamalig (grainary) where rice was kept.  It's gone now too.   My grandparents owned many rice producing farms and so rice was abundant for us.  Past the kamalig were the pigpens under the canopy of the mango trees.  Over the pigpens were the outhouse.  The pens are gone too and the caretakers house was built in this area. 
Around all the buildings were many, many fruit trees.  Guava, mangoes, chico, kasoy, suha.  All of the fruit trees except for the mangoes have disappeared but Mr. Marshall and Ms. Rose are lovingly restoring the grounds.  As you can see, it’s a beautiful and colorful botanical paradise.  The grounds are clean and well taken care of,  each stone positioned artfully and each vine trained just right.  I was so impressed with the flowers and I am hoping that the lessons I got on seeding will be helpful for me to create something close here in the US.
On the very back end of the property, at the corner where the mango tree dominates is where Mother Mary's new grotto is.  She too had a new house layout.  She sits high atop the mangoes main large bough overlooking the whole property. 
 I like her better here amidst all the flowers.  She looks happier over looking and being able to see everything and keep a watchful eye.  Ms. Rose brings her a fresh flower every morning and she is the first thing that Mr. Marshall brings inside for protection at the threat of any bad weather. 
Somehow, I also feel that this is her rightful place.  With all the new changes on the property and in the house, the only thing that has remained original and unmoved from when Lolo and Lola moved in almost 100 years ago  was this mango tree.

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