Joy and Jaime de la Rosa
…the wedding in photos and life as one big family
By Apolinario Villalobos
Four days after Jaime Bides and I surprised Jaime de la Rosa at his office in Tantangan, South Cotabato, we surprised him again at his residence, this time, to satisfy our curiosity about his second wife, Joy. During our first meeting, we were warned by Jaime that going to his home is not a joke as we would be gingerly stepping on narrow rice paddies. What he told me was true, as the narrow municipal road came to a dead-end, from which we had to cross a very short “bridge” and finally, trek over soft and moist rice paddies that led to a surprisingly beautiful mango grove, in the midst of which was the de la Rosa ancestral home.
But more surprised due to our unannounced visit was Jaime and his new wife, Joy, her parents and two children. Jaime was in the midst of “pasabwag”, a shorter way of planting rice, in which seeds were spread throughout the expanse of the wet fields, instead of having them germinated and replanted after the seedlings have reached a certain height.
The old house was practically surrounded with various flowering plants and fruit trees, such as bird of paradise, camia, ground orchids, mangoes, pomelo and coconut. The paradise-like nook was separated from the residential area of New Iloilo by rice fields.
I found out that as Jaime was working at the nearby town of Tantangan and while Joy had to do her rounds of direct selling, going home at night is a sacrifice as they had to light their way over the narrow rice paddies with a flashlight. And, more difficult it is when the trek is made under the heavy pelting rains. But, despite the difficulty, they still persisted.
Jaime de la Rosa confided that before his first wife died their children were already grown up and were given the liberty to be on their own. This liberal gesture made the children decide not to live in the ancestral house, leaving their father alone when their mother died. Fortunately, the paths of Jaime and Joy again met and as they had already established a close friendly relationship before, a wedding proposal was not a problem. The best part was when the family of Joy consented to live with them. Not long after then, Joy’s parents and children moved in together with another relative……Jaime, in no time, reaped the fruit of his “investment” – a brand new family, complete with parents!