I first wrote my autobiography in 2008 and updated it in 2011. There are several things that changed since 2011 in my family personal lives and a few significant events that is needed to be updated. I will include more photos so the articles will be not too boring for those who have already read this post. Again, I will appreciate any comments. I will also highlights all the updates.
The Lechon (Roast Suckling Pig) at Ditas Baptism Party
In addition to our involvement with the church and the Christian Family Movement (CFM), our life in Kansas City also involved our participation with the Filipino-American Association Of Greater Kansas City social activities.
One of our Christmas parties was featured in the Kansas City Dispatch dated January, 1969 and titled "The Nipa Hut- Right Here The in Northland". We purchased our first house in Platte Woods, Missouri and named it "The Nipa Hut" in 1967.
An excerpt from Mary Jane Peironnet(reporter for the Dispatch) article is as follows:
"Its many thousand of miles from Manila P.I. to Platte Woods, U.S.A., but at 5701 N. W Linden Road, on the edge of the southern Platte community, there's home which the Filipino owners have called a Nipa hut-after the thatched palm leaf huts typical of their native land".
" In this self-styled "hut", now surrounded by snow and wintry weather 70 or 80 degrees colder than that of the tropical Philippines, Dr. and Mrs. David Katague are carrying on many of their native customs while bringing up their four children in the American ways of their neighbors and classmates at Chin School."
Dodie, Dinah, David E and Ditas on our way to church in front of our garage, Gladstone, Missouri, 1966
" The gold-lettered "Nipa Hut" sign in the Katagues' front door causes much comments from guests, Mrs. Macrine Katague says, because the family filipino friends know the meaning of the term and understand the reason for calling the 4-bedroom 3-bathroom rambling ranch house in an acre of land, a hut."
" Especially during the holiday season do the transplanted Filipinos, carry on with the tradition of their birthplace. Family and church observances began nine days before Christmas and they will continue through Jan 6, known in this country as Epiphany, but celebrated in the Philippines as the Feast of the Three Kings for the three wise men who visited infant Christ 12 days after his birth".
" Tuesday night, Dr and Mrs Katague climaxed their holiday entertaining with a New Year's Eve party for nearly 30 of their countrymen, members of the Filipino Association Greater Kansas City. The year's end festivity was a colorful affair, where the women in their bright "ternos", native gowns characterized by butterfly sleeves, and the men in "Barongs" embroidered silk shirts worn with dark slacks, assembled to wish each other " Maligayang Pasko at Bagong Taon", the tagalog version of Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
"As the clocked ticked off the last minutes of '68, the Katagues and their guests toasted the new year with San Miquel beer sent from the Philippines by some of their families. Soon after midnight, a traditional repast was enjoyed by the party-goers. Rice cakes( known as puto), pancit ( noodles), cheese balls ( queso de bola), leche flan ( egg custard), dinuguan ( bloody pudding), ginger tea and chocolate were among the food and drinks served during the party."
The Typical Nipa Hut in Rural Philippines, Buenavista, Marinduque
The rest of the article described why we immigrated to US and how the family are adjusting to the typical American life in the suburbs of a Midwestern city. Pictures of Macrine in her terno(evening gown) and me in my barong, as well as of Ditas highlighted the article. Ditas looked exactly like Carenna, when Carenna was also four years old.
Another party at our residence was also published in the local paper, a baptismal party for Ditas. The article was published in the the Kansas City Star, dated June, 1965. Here is the full article in the society page titled
"On the Kansas City Scene."
"When a child is baptized in the Philippines, it is an occasion for celebrating. Like so many other religious holidays and festivals,it calls for an all-out project in the kitchen.
Last Sunday in Gladstone the fourth child of Dr. and Mrs. David B Katague was baptized at the St. Charles Catholic Church. Late that afternoon, a full blown luau took place in the baby girl's honor although in typical American fashion, 2-month-old Ditas Macrine Katague quickly became the charge of her baby sitter.
The young Philippine family moved here last year after Dr. Katague had completed his graduate study at the University of Illinois in Chicago. Among the American and Filipino friends on hand to share the family occasion were the baby's godmother,
Mrs Jose Liwag who came from Chicago with her husband, and Senora Maria Elena Cobian de Rojas, whose home is Mexico City. There were about 30 in all.
The unanimous choice for starring role in the food department was a roast suckling pig that stole the whole show. It cooked slowly, deliciously all afternoon while a watchful host tended the spit. When it was crisp on the outside and succulent inside, it was then ready to be brought with pomp to the table.
Chopping the food is the hardest and slowest task of all, Mrs Katague commented on the many courses she prepared to accompany the pork. Mixing the ingredients, takes only about a half hour, she said. "But unlike party dishes that can be prepared well ahead of time, these must be put together just as the guest are arriving."
Sweet and sour peppers were one of the native appetizers she served with Hawaiian punch, spiked with rum. Some more typical American hors d'oeuvres found their way to the table, as well. One other dish served was an elaborate noodle, chicken and shrimp dish flavored with spices. Another delicacy was pea pods with shrimps. For dessert, a special rice cake was served with coffee.
Later in the evening several guests took a turn at the piano, some playing classical, others concentrating on popular music and jazz. "It was nostalgic when we sang some of our native tunes", the filipino mother reminisced.
All the while the guest of honor slept blissfully through it all!
Planning to Retire Soon!
If you are planning to retire in the Philippines soon, I suggest you visit several excellent websites on pro's and cons of retiring in the Philippines. However if you want to retire in the provinces, where life is simple, standard of living cheaper, less traffic congestion and pollution, availability of fresh seafood and vegetables compared to the big cities, my island province is the place for you! If this is your first time in my site, welcome. Please do not forget to read the latest national and international news in the right side bar of this blog. Some of the photos and videos on this site, I do not own. However, I have no intention on the infringement of your copyrights. The photo above is the front yard of Chateau Du Mer-Our Retirement Home in Boac, Marinduque, Philippines