I met a remarkable woman today.
My day started as another ordinary day.
After I have brought the girls to the university.
I went back to our rented room.
I decided to take a nap because the offices are still closed at 6:45 a.m.
I can’t transact any business yet.
At 10 a.m. I decided to go out again.
Infront of the gate of our rented room, I saw Ate (term to refer to an older lady) cooking the delicious-looking turon.
It is made of thin slices of banana with jackfruit rolled in lumpia wrappers.
It is fried crispy.
She has one medium-sized table.
She has her cooking utensils on one side.
At the other side of her table is a small transparent cabinet for the cooked turon.
She was still cooking the new batch of turon.
It smelled very delicious.
I decided to wait and sat on the very small wooden chair near the table.
While she was cooking.
I learned that she’s renting P3,000 (about US$60) a month for that small space.
That she used to rent a bigger space at the nearby college for P10,000 (about US$200) a month.
The place isn’t for rent anymore. It’s now occupied by the nephew of the owner.
I asked her how much does she earn a day.
She has a net of P500 to P600 a day (about US$10 to US$12)!
Ate has one daughter who graduated from the university where I taught for 22 years.
She financed the studies of her daughter by making and selling turon.
She is diligent.
I learned that she’s also a brave woman.
I asked her what’s the job of her husband.
She said “Nothing. I have returned him to his family”.
“When my daughter has finished college, I told my husband to go away from us”.
The husband had no work.
He was also a womanizer.
He used Ate’s hard earned money for his extra marital affairs.
Ate said she only waited for her daughter to graduate.
Before making that big decision of kicking out her husband.
“I didn’t want her studies to be affected”.
The daughter is already working at the nearby college where she used to rent a bigger place for her turon business.