I think everyone saw the film and the two after it. Removed of the violence and the intricate relationships between the main characters and their villains, I believe it painted a clear sketch of what the figure represents in real life.
I am no Corleone nor I would want to be.
I am a godfather to thirteen godchildren from baptisms, three from confirmations and a couple from a marriage. The last was a late addition and perhaps inappropriate based on traditions. Only married individuals could be godparents to would be wedded pairs.
Ninong is the local term used for males and ninang for females.
My godchildren wish and pray that one day they will have a ninang beside me. It was the constant joke rehashed with gusto by my kumpare and kumare (male and female parents of the children respectively). As usual, I simply grin without engaging them further with the banter.
As secondary parent to the children (some are teenagers), I try to fulfill my responsibilities to the best of my abilities. I could be more strict than real parents but I do not overstep my bounds. It’s no wonder why they revolve around me like planets circling the sun.
Practical knowledge and love of nature are two of the most important lessons I try to impress on them. They have to grow as responsible individuals even in the most trying of times in a country where their future will be realized.
Whenever I hear that appellation, I often feel like a teacher trying to mold young minds into better thinkers. I could make them understand that being literate is not only about reading and writing, that it requires critical thinking as well.
I am optimistic that they won’t let me down.