Speaking English at home was a cardinal rule stemming from my paternal grandfather who wanted to mark it as his legacy to our clan.
Not only the house helpers were caught in this rule. Even his own party guests became obliged to speak English, especially when we, children, were around.
One such guest was a close friend of my grandmother . Lady M. was a lumber yard owner whose rags-to-riches story was locally known.And she talked highly of herself,too! ☺️
During Lolo’s birthday party, Lady M. enjoyed her bragging rights to the fullest, in broken English. When it was time for her to go home, she asked my grandmother to let her take home some of the dishes she loved! She would always remind my grandmother or my Uncles or Dad to have the food wrapped with what she insistingly called as ‘Lum-Lum-Poy’.
When party ended, she went to the kitchen and asked for her ‘food-to-go‘. So, my Lola gave her some in plastic containers. She protested and wanted these in ‘Lum-Lum-Poy’ again!
My Dad intervened and asked Lady M. to point at what she meant.🤔
Lady M. scoffed at my Dad ,and with a curt remark she said:
“Ay, Doctor ka, you do not know ‘Lum-Lum-Poy’? “
She pointed at the kitchen pantry, at the shimmering,silver thing marked ‘Reynolds Wrap’!
Lady M. meant ‘Aluminum Foil’ !.
The ‘Lum-Lum-Poy Mystery’ was finally solved!