Author: Pao Alfonso

Hand Engraved Kaweco Liliput Brass

Last year (December 2018) I contacted master engraver, Jay Del Fierro, to ask if he can make custom engravings on a pen for me. I told him that I intended it to be a tribute pen to honor the memory of my mom who passed away a few years ago. His schedule was pretty much booked so he wanted to decline my request, but when he found out it’s a tribute pen for my mom, he graciously added me to his long list of projects. Fast forward to yesterday, when he shipped the pen over to our place all the way from Bicol.

I’m amazed at how much detail these roses have, and that they fit in such a tiny pen such as the Kaweco Liliput (the only brass pen I own). Everything is hand engraved, even the beautiful italic lettering.

I asked for a garden of roses because my mom loved those flowers, and because I have a particularly special memory of her that involved roses. The words “Lively Little Treasure” is the meaning of my name (Alva Pao-Pei). My name was the first thing that my mom gave me when I was born. She gave it a lot of thought and as soon as I’m old enough to understand, she taught me what it meant. Some of the clearest memories I have of my early childhood were of my mom taking my face in her hands, looking me in the eyes, and telling me that I’m her lively little treasure.

I wasn’t always very appreciative of my unique name. Being an extremely introverted child, I hated drawing any kind of attention to myself, and of course I hated having to explain to strangers what my name meant. I learned to love it as time went by, though. I learned to like explaining the meaning of my name to anyone who asked. After my mother passed away, I grew to treasure every evidence of thoughts that she had about me. Journal entries, letters, email messages…my name. These are all precious to me.

I waited 6 months before I got it back, but it’s really worth the wait. I love the work that Jay did on my pen. Now there’s no other Liliput quite like it. It’s as unique as my name. 🙂

Not About Breakfast

Last  night’s journal entry is about how inaccessible proper nutrition and affordable healthcare is in Manila. I was also craving for tuyosilog because I can smell the  neighbor cooking some. ^_^ I wanted to paint a whole page of rice grains but decided to make it a background of rice-like shadows instead. I really love how Tomoe River crinkles up with watercolors. There’s slight warping on it, but I like the texture after it dries up.

An Escape Portal

I wrote these journal entries a few weeks ago. It’s about a book I was reading at that time, Out of Africa  by Isak Dinesen. It reminded me of what I love most about reading–being whisked away completely to another place and time. I was an extremely introverted child and books were my escape portal. My reading material may have changed a lot through the years, but it’s still a singular pleasure to pick up a book and find yourself immersed in a place you wouldn’t have known about, surrounded by people you wouldn’t have met otherwise.

Heaven

I forgot to post this journal entry from April. It’s about a book I was reading at the time, Heaven by Randy Alcorn. Different religions have different beliefs about the afterlife, and being a Christian, I believe that there is a heaven and hell. After reading this book, I realized how I honestly didn’t really spend a lot of time thinking about it. I took for granted that heaven is just…heaven. More to be desired for what’s NOT in it than for what it is. The book explored the Biblical descriptions of heaven, and it paints a partial picture of what is to come.