Recently, this lawyer named Alex Castro caught the attention of many netizens when she shared about the hardships she faced in college, and met this kind-hearted taho vendor who became a big part of her college life.
She wrote a lengthy post on Facebook and uploaded a photo with her second father, ‘Tatay dong’
“Tay, may abogado ka na.”
“I imagined myself saying those words to you as I was driving along the University Avenue this morning. Coming home to UP always meant coming home to everything I loved and cherished for eight years, including you. So as I drove around campus, I kept throwing glances at large crowds, or the places you used to frequent, searching for the great mantataho — my Tatay Dong.”
Although the young lawyer didn’t explain about her status in life, you can tell that she struggled financially back in her college days. There were times when she would go to school with an empty stomach and would only eat taho in the morning before she go to her class.
“I met you when I was a wide-eyed freshie. We’d see each other at 7am every day, because you were stationed at the building I had my morning class in. We’d chat every morning over taho. Eventually, you found out that I’d always go to school with an empty stomach. So you made it a point to wait for me in the morning, rain or shine, with a fresh cup of taho, every single day for four years, until I finished my undergrad degree,” she added.
When Tatay Dong heard about this over their usual small talks, he made sure to wait for Alex every morning, rain or shine – to make sure she had something to eat!
“I was just a daughter you picked up along the way, but you were so protective of me. One rainy day in December of 2009, I went to school without a coat. I remember you were so concerned. So the following morning, you handed me a package along with my taho. When I opened it, it was your coat. The one you were wearing the previous morning, and all the mornings before that. Your ~only~ coat. You wouldn’t take it back, and the only thing you said to me when I tried to give it back for the last time is, ‘Nilaban ko na ‘yan, ‘Nak. Iyo na ‘yan,’” Alex continued.
But this friendly stranger did not just give her food she needs; tatay Dong was as well one of her supporters in all her goals. When he saw that the young student didn’t bring a coat, the next day, the taho vendor cleaned his only coat and gave it to her. Though Tatay Dong didn’t have that much personal belongings, he selflessly gives his only coat to keep his ‘adopted daughter’ warm.
“Eventually, I was able to return the favor. I got you a new coat for you to wear. You wore it with so much pride and such a huge smile the morning after, and all the mornings after that. Whenever your friends asked about it, you’d always say, ‘Bigay ng anak ko ‘yan,’” she also shared.
“Fortunately, earlier today, word got to you that I was in UP. I couldn’t help but smile when I saw you rushing to the Sunken Garden from afar. When you saw me, you immediately embraced me and exclaimed, “I missed you!” It truly felt like a homecoming. You held me so tight, and finally, I was able to tell you the words you said you’d wait to hear from me —“‘Tay, may abogado ka na.”I hope I made you proud,
‘Tay. You deserve all the love in the world.”
After she becomes a lawyer, Alex went back to her campus to pay a visit to her honorary father and personally inform him about her achievement.
What an amazing story!