Friday, October 30, 2009

“bahay kubo”

It can be said – with true nationalism and honest pride – that the well known and much appreciated song “Bahay Kubo” has already acquired distinct fond memories and longing as well, it implies the blessings of ease and peace. Furthermore, it puts across such pleasant and pleasing realities as only most elderly Filipinos know: the homeliness and simplicity of a nipa hut that is easy to build, to repair, to transfer from one place to another. The fresh winds, the welcomed sunlight and tender moonlight that accompany it throughout the day. Add hereto added is the simple living, few needs and wholesome environment that the “Bahay Kubo” aptly signifies when song is sung as it should be.

But one of the more significant features of and special vision generated by the Filipino humble nipa hut standing on also humble ground size is the standard greenery which is a composite of likewise humble vegetables of different kinds for different purposes. In other words, aside from the standard medicinal plants, the following are usually planted in the hut surrounding: Singkamas at talong. Sigarilyas at mani. Sitaw, bataw, patani. Labanos, mustasa. Sibuyas, kamatis. Bawang at luya. Linga. This is not to mention the following usual greens also planted at the “Bahay Kubo” lot: “Kalabasa” and “ampalaya”. “Sili” at “okra”. “Saging” at “Malunggay”. And others according to felt need of the family residing therein.

What is the point in all these – the “Bahay Kubo” and the planting and having this and that edible as well nutritious food items? It is not really the Nipa Hut but what it symbolizes: Not merely its simple appearance and humble representation as the simple way that life should be during this difficult time, but specially so the big utility and marvelous practicality it forwards for people to take note of and emulate in the way of living during these trying days. In other words, let people engage in backyard gardening. Let families do their so called “Green Revolution” by planting common and easy to raise vegetables in their gardens, in small and/or big plastic containers, in sacks and tin cans, inclusive of car tires if any.

With such a greening resolution, here are but of its valuable advantages: It takes rather little effort and time to plant and water those ordinary veggies, thereafter merely allowing the sun to grow them for their harvesting soon. It is certain that such vegetables and other garden produce are free of harmful pesticides, in addition to their guaranteed freshness, nutritious and healthy attributes. It saves the family a good number of pesos in the long run – money which can be readily used for other standard family expenses.

By the way, it might be good to ask the following questions: What is really wrong with the symbolism of the “Bahay Kubo”? What is really lost by family backyard gardening? What evil can “Green Revolution” really bring a household? What is much healthier to eat – vegetable or meat? The truth is that only the following are the impediments to backyard gardening: When a family has no backyard to garden. When a domestic community has a backyard of one kind or another but also has indolence as basic liability.

Bahay kubo. Green Revolution. Vegetable Garden. Why not?


OVCruz, JCD
October 30, 2009