“Have you seen them?”
We arrived at the town center before eleven in the morning of a cloudy Saturday. It was called market day since farmers all around the municipality gather in one place to sell their produce.
My godchild was not interested on looking for the other boys. He was mesmerized by all the assorted cheap toys from China that were haphazardly displayed on the sidewalk by small-time hawkers.
I held on his right arm tightly lest he could get lost in the crowd.
“Let’s look for them near that restaurant,” I suggested without waiting for his assent.
“Ninong, I want to piss,” he said urgently while holding on to the front of his short pants. “I need to go now.”
I was never a good chaperon for children because sometimes I tire of their constant whining although they were lovable at best. At home, I could withstand all their swinging moods but never on the road.
“Just stay calm. I’ll talk to the store owner. Stay where you are.”
I left him alone but I got one eye on him the whole time.
I did not look at my watch but I thought it was only a five-minute talk with a waiter who granted my request. I signaled my godchild to come over but he was not in a hurry to come forward.
“What’s the matter? I thought you want to go to the comfort room.”
“It’s done, Ninong!” he claimed, his anxiety I observed earlier had vanished from his face.
“Where did you?” I asked, finishing my question with a stern look.
He pointed to the spot on the wall where the trace of his output was clearly visible.
“There are people around.”
“Ninong, I am still very young. They won’t mind seeing a small bird.”
I raised both my hands high in surrender. Kids nowadays could be so aggravatingly reasonable.
Without missing his seemingly rehearsed cue, he defeated my mission.
“Ninong, I saw them riding the tricycle home. I think we missed them.”
I was not sure if he was lying but the angelic smile he offered smacked of disinformation. I was probably led to a wild goose chase. Perhaps, they were not even there to begin with.
“Come on, let’s eat.”
The boy was famished.