Sunday, March 20, 2011
EI NA PINAOPAO! THE ASUSENA FLOWER
Tonight at the Saint Joseph fiesta in Inarajan, I learned from Tony Ramirez, a well-known historical and cultural resource person, that the flowers on the åndas were asusena flowers. I know nothing about flowers and couldn't tell you the difference between the asusena, ilang-ilang and dama de noche, but Tony says all three are different. To me, they're all mames and paopao. Years ago at the original friary, Father Marcian used to say how much he liked the smell of the dama de noche that grew near his window. Whenever I'd drive through Fonte (the lush valley below Naval Hospital on the way to Adelup) at dusk, I'd smell the captivating fragrance of ilang-ilang. At least that's what everyone told me.