Category Archives: Asuncion’s History

Asuncion Treasures at the Central Bank Museum and Metropolitan Museum Of Manila

Posted by junasun

The following photos of the works of Rafael Asuncion, Justiniano and Mariano El Major (or maybe of El Minor) were provided to us by Sonny Asuncion Rayos during his last visit  to Manila. Only very few of our relatives are aware of the existence of some valuable works and masterpieces of our forefathers in these museums and in private collections. We owe a lot then to relative like Sonny for his untiring hunt for our  lost treasures.

Here is Sonny:

“The Asuncion and Paterno art and historical pieces are sought after by museums in Manila. Here are some of the art works of Mariano and Rafael Asuncion from the Central Bank Museum.  The Metropolitan Museum of Manila has, in its collection, an oil painting of Justiniano Asuncion entitled “Ang Pagpanaw ng Patriyarka…. I am excited to see these important historical and art pieces and I am just as thrilled to share these pictures with Bulan Observer readers.”
 

 

 

Rafael Asuncion and his Peso designs

 

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Pedro Paterno and the Five and Ten peso note of the first Philippine Republic

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Justiniano Asuncion’s The Passing Of The Patriarch

 

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Mariano Asuncion’s Nuestra Senora De La Paz

 

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Asuncion kin reunion

by jun asun*

To all Asuncion relatives:

There will be a reunion on August 15 at 24 Times Street as requested by Sor Marissa Asuncion to celebrate the Feast of La Asuncion de Nuestra Seniora.

There will be a 6:30 pm mass followed by dinner. It will be a potluck.

For more Info, please contact Ed Rojas or Malou Asuncion.

*Thanks Ed and Malou for the Info! I wish you all a happy get-together.- jun asun

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Atty. K. Digno M. Asuncion

by Eduardo C. Rojas 

Today at 8:36 AM
My fellow Asuncion relatives, just saw this post of cousin Elcee’s FB.  Elcee is our second cousin (my generation though Elcee and her sibling Architect K Digno are younger).  Their dad K. Digno Asuncion is the first cousin of our mom (generation of Gracia Asuncion Carrillo Rojas & Corazon Asuncion Carrillo Galang).  Atty K Digno’s dad, Kenerino (married to Leonor Manas) is the sibling of our grandmother Guia Asuncion Carrillo (same generation as Consuelo Asuncion Intengan, Adonis Asuncion, Jacobo Asuncion, Rodolfo Asuncion, ..).  Malou & brother Andres “Jun”Asuncion’s line comes from Adonis, Sor Marissa Asuncion & sis Sor Naty come from Jacobo, Grace – Ann Grey – Monina – Ronivic – Rollie came from Dr Ronnie Asuncion, whose dad Rodolfo (married to Monica Gerona) is the brother of our grandmother Guia Asuncion.

 

Elcee Asuncion Villa

14 hrs ·

Our father, Atty. K. Digno M Asuncion, passed away peacefully in Manila today, May 12th – just as his wife and 5 children were taking Leone Giulio to the crematorium in Italy. He was surrounded by his loving in-laws and grandchildren. It is bittersweet that we lost 2 people we love within a week of each other. But now we know that we have 2 angels in heaven who are toasting us right now with their fav beer. We love you Dad. You taught us so much. You loved us so much.

 

To Elcee,  Ding and Families:

We would like to express our sincere  condolences on the passing away of your father Atty. K. Digno Asuncion. Tears on earth, joy in heaven.

jun asuncion + Family and Bulan Observer

 

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April 2013 – A Blessed Month For Reunions

by Sonny Asuncion Rayos
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Sometimes plans go awry and dreams of reunions, even years in the making, do not materialize. Blame it on unfavorable timing, exorbitant plane fare or just plain and simple: flights are fully booked. Legitimate excuses. The reality is Asuncion family reunions are scheduled in late December or January are tough for travelers.
From out of nowhere, I received an email from Lota about an Asuncion family reunion on April 6. It was meant to be! This is perfect timing. I already have my plane tickets for travel to Manila in late March. Maybe I was trying to mask and contain my excitement because the only reply I sent was “I will be able to make this reunion.”
An old cliché comes to mind – “Pictures are worth a thousand words” and “To make a long story short,” here are some of the pictures taken during the Asuncion reunion.
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But wait! There’s more!! Attached is a photo with Manong Gabriel Asuncion with daughter Jo Anne. Manong Gabby has been my source of almost anything Asuncion . I must admit, this is my first time I’ve met Manong, although we talked often via telephone or email. Gabby’s brother the late Eugenio was  instrumental in reminding me that I am an Asuncion . I knew vaguely of this fact (other than it being the surname of my maternal grandmother) and the historical importance of what it meant – so thanks Eugene and may you rest in peace. Manong Gabby’s lineage is Leoncio Asuncion, then Hilarion Asuncion, then Jose Maria Asuncion.  My maternal grandmother, Feliza, is the youngest sister of Jose Maria.
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A reunion with Santa Cruz Church ?  Could one consider this a reunion? I must say YES. I am getting reunited with the two commemorative plaques of my great, great, (how many more great?) uncle and grandfather Justiniano and Leoncio Asuncion. These are located on the west side of the SC church (on your right hand part if facing the façade of the church). Herewith are the photos of each marker
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It can’t be better than this: Asuncion-Paterno reunion! Our common ancestry starts with a china man named Ming Mong Lo. He is considered a sanglay; a spanish colonial term for pure chinese immigrants who are in the Manila to conduct commerce.  It comes from the Chinese word “Seng-Li” meaning business. Family records described him as an “apothecary of Mandarin descent.” He had his named changed to Jose Molo when he was baptized. It is well documented in archives that Jose Molo is the progenitor of the Paterno family – with one of the sons, Paterno Molo de San Agustin, eventually changing the surname Molo (and those of his siblings following suit) to Paterno. One of the daughters of Jose Molo is Maria de la Paz Molo de San Agustin. Maria de la Paz married Mariano Cagalitan. The Cagalitan surname was later changed to Assumpcion then finally to Asuncion .
The reunion and reunification of blood siblings of Ming Mong Lo – the Asuncions and the Paternos is considered one of the highlights of April. This is about seven or eight generations of pinsans from the progenitor Ming Mong Lo. Attached are photos of this event. The setting for this historic event couldn’t be more perfect – at the Orchid Garden Suites – a beautiful hotel (excellent staff, wide choice of food, clean and wholesome hotel) across the Century Park Sheraton in Vito Cruz St. Malate, Manila .
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The last reunion for this blessed month of April is the most special and personal. This is my reunion with the ivory sculpture of baby Jesus by Leoncio Asuncion. Attached are several photos. This sculpture is the one that my mother, Juanita Asuncion-Palileo, takes out during Christmas and New Year for all of us kids to kiss. This is a known work of Leoncio with good provenance – a hand me down from generations.
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I hope you’ve enjoyed my Asuncion family stories and photos. Until the next Asuncion reunion or better yet a joint Asuncion-Paterno reunion.
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Asuncion Clan Reunion 2013

“Kita Kits Muli Tayo”

“ASUNCION TOGETHER FOREVER”

WHEN:      April 6, 2013 @ 4:00pm onwards

WHERE:   #18 Collins ST. Dona Faustina I

                  Culliat, Quezon City

                  Atty. Godofredo Asuncion‘s

                  Residence and  Clubhouse                    

Pls. call :     

Lota  Asuncion Abella-  

Atty. Nina Asuncion- 

Atty. Edgar Asuncion- 

Mary Anne  Asuncion Gray-

Pls. coordinate with  Lota A. Abella for the Food

Pls. bring gifts for the raffle and games.

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From Sta. Cruz to Binãn: The Asuncion- Yatco- Carillo Lineage

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Bulan Pier

Bulan. The picturesque coastal town of Bulan was one of the first migration destinations of the Asuncions of Sta. Cruz. The spirit of the time of transition had already been felt in the Asuncion household. The master painter Justiniano was the first to realize that it was no more his time. Styles had changed and so was the taste of the artistic consumers. New names like Luna and Hidalgo were in everyone’s tongue  as they had just brought home the bacon from Europe. It was this existential uncertainty that drove Justiniano to follow his son Zacharias in Bulan who had already successfully established himself being a grocery store owner and his political  engagement in the community. The ageing Justiniano for sure did not travel alone but in the company of somebody – probably Benita.

justiniano asuncion from damian domingo book, 2010 (5)

Dolores Paterno
ca. 1870 by Justiniano Asuncion

Binãn and Pasig. Perhaps around this time, those pretty nieces of Justiniano, once his favorite models for his portrait works, also moved southwards of Manila, namely, Binãn, Laguna, hence, making Binãn the second known migration place of the Asuncions. These women, Romana and Valentina Asuncion were the daughters of Antonio Asuncion (born 1794), (Justiniano’s brother) whose wife was Remigia Sta. Ana of Pasig. The third place where an Asuncion migrated was Pasig with Antonio Asuncion, a known artist and where he also became Gobernadorcilo in his time – true to this rare mixture of politics and arts in the Asuncion  blood. This migration to Binãn resulted ultimately into the blood fusion with Yatco, Carillo-Trinidad and Yaptinchay – all prominent Binãn families.

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The Binãn Church

We were toured around the center of Binãn by my relative Christopher Yatco where he showed us the houses where  the Yatcos, together with Romana and Valentina Asuncion, once lived. A nostalgic mini tour, shooting pictures of these old spanish houses as I tried to imagine how they lived there at that time. Romana and Valentina were my first cousins, me being three generations younger.

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Valentina Asuncion married a Yatco which is one of the oldest gems of  Binãn. His name was Ignacio.  His brother Gregorio was the father of Ysidro Yatco, the progenitor of the “Tres Marias de Yatco” of Binãn. The merchant’s Ysidro Yatco wife was Bonifacia Mercado, sister of Jose Rizal’s father, Fransico Mercado. The Tres Marias- Salud, Leonila and Paz- were Jose Rizal’s first cousins. (The young student Jose Rizal did not use his  family name Mercado upon the advice of his brother Paciano to avoid being linked to Father Gomez who was executed by the Spaniards).

Filomena Villafranca Y Asuncion

Valentina Asuncion and Ignacio Yatco’s children were Eleuterio, Jose, Leoncio and Filomena [ married to Eugenio Alzona]. (Note: There are two other Filomenas: One Filomena [married to a Castrillo] , daughter of  Romana Asuncion Carillo and another Filomena [married to a Villafranca], daughter of Leoncio Asuncion [born 1813] , Justiniano’s older brother. )

According to Christopher Yatco (born 1974), Eleuterio Yatco y Asuncion had a son in the name of Francisco whose wife was Asuncion Belizario (here the name Asuncion is a first name).Their children being : Josefina Yatco (married to Andy Francia),  Digna Yatco (married to Momoy Concepcion),  Thomas Yatco (married to Florinda Sabater), Ruben Yatco (married to Adelaida Ponce) and Ernestina Yatco (a spinster) .

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Jun, Christopher, Florabel and Mila
November 2012, Felix Restaurant, Greenbelt 5 Makati

Christopher Yatco’s parents are Ruben Yatco and Adelaida Ponce. Christopher is a soft-spoken man, open-minded, friendly, very generous, informed and interested in many things. He and his wife Florabel Co- Yatco run a chain of reputable restaurants in Metro Manila. This photo above was taken at Felix restaurant owned by Chris and Florabel, a great venue with excellent food, service – and a jazzy background music! Indeed, they’re very industrious and successful entrepreneurs. Christopher’s interest in genealogy is amazing at his age despite the work that he has as a businessman – in a true Yatco- Asuncion fashion. He is a first cousin three generations younger of Don Ysidro Yatco, once a prominent business person in Binãn. His great, great-grandfather Antonio Asuncion had not the slightest idea that, 218 years after his birth, one of his “offsprings” in the name of Christopher would meet another offspring of his younger brother Justiniano. We both sensed the significance of that evening, acknowledging that we both were living extensions of our ancestors and that we have the duty to look back and honor them. Christopher is my fourth cousin a generation younger  and fifth cousin to my sons.

The Yatcos and Mercados are related as in-laws. We may say that Ysidro Yatco, being the husband of Jose Rizal’s aunt Bonifacia Mercado, was Jose’s “uncle in-law” (or Jose Rzal being Ysidro’s “nephew in -law”) and so were Ysidros’ other brothers, as they were the uncles of the Tres Marias. From the surface there seems to be no direct blood relationship among the other Yatcos with the Mercados and that all other Yatcos do not carry the Mercado’s genes, that they are just in- laws. Yet Bonfacia’s next offsprings carry the Yatco genes in themselves, the same copy that Christopher has. And if we would go a little a deeper in the sense that we would forget people and talk of blood as a collective entity then the mixing of these two bloods – the Yatcos’ and the Mercado’s”- through the union of Ysidro and Bonifacia- had ultimately effected a chemical bonding of both bloods which affects all other people carrying these bloods. This is perhaps what we mean when we say ” that person is my distant relative”.

If in-laws are distant relatives, then it goes beyond the common consanguinity relationships from first to seventh cousins. For how distant is a distant relative really? Who and what defines and limits relationships? The western concept of family relationship is very limited to biology. There are cultures and even certain people that regard family relationship beyond this common concept. The English term “next of kin” does not necessarily mean a blood-relative. And a person has the natural right to call somebody to whom he or she feels strong affinity as brother or sister. There is somehow also a spiritual dimension to human and family relationship. I mean, if we would extend the line of Ysidro Yatco as son- in-law of Juan Mercado, the grandfather of Jose Rizal, and Christopher being a great, great grand-nephew of Ysidro Yatco, therefore, Christopher could be Jose Rizal’s three generations younger “first- cousin-in-law”, with Paz, Salud and Leonila being Jose Rizal’s direct (blood) first cousins as seen from Jose Rizal’s family tree and Christopher being Salud, Paz and Leonila’s second cousin by blood, two generations younger as seen from the Yatco family tree.

Romana Asuncion
portrait done by Justiniano Asuncion

With Romana Asuncion, the ninth child of Antonio Asuncion and Remigia Sta. Ana, the Asuncions got connected with another prominent Binãn family, the Carillo-Trinidad. Romana married Andres Carillo-Trinidad. Their daughter, Petronilla married a Yatco (as if following the foosteps of her aunt Valentina Asuncion). His name was Fermin Yatco y Yaptinchay, the son of Aniceto Yatco and Simeona Yaptinchay. Aniceto was Ignacio’s brother. Simeona herself was a daughter of a Carillo-Trinidad, Maria, who became the wife of the first Yaptinchay, namely Yap Tin Chay, a migrant Chinese, with Yap as the family name and Tin Chay the first name. However, his descendants adopted the combined names Yaptinchay as their family name (source : Toto Gonzalez). How Andres and Maria Carillo- Trinidad were related to one another is my question to the  Carillos of today.

But you may have noticed by now that Fermin Yatco y Yaptinchay who married Petronila Carillo- Trinidad, actually was a Carillo- Trinidad also through his grandmother Maria Yaptinchay  y Carillo- Trinidad. Hence, Petronila and Fermin were blood relatives.

Now, Petronila’s and Fermin Yatco’s son, Macario Yatco y Carillo  (y Asuncion y Yaptinchay!) married Guia, an Asuncion and daughter of Zacharias Asuncion from his first wife Juana Zalvedia. I was informed that Juana Zalvedia was also an Asuncion- being the daughter of Canuta Asuncion, Justiniano’s sister. (Love seemed to be so blind among the first Asuncions). From this union between Macario and Guia was born a daughter named Gracia Yatco (y Carillo y Asuncion y Asuncion). Formally, Guia was three times an Asuncion and her daughter, Gracia, four times an Asuncion. Gracia married a Rojas (hope the mother of Emmanuel Rojas, Sr. was not an Asuncion!) and they gave birth to Ed and Noel Rojas. Hence, although a Rojas, and taking Zacharias as point of reference (common ancestor), Ed and Noel are more Asuncion than an Asuncion because they are five times an Asuncion, formally speaking, through Zacharias- Zalvedia- Macario- Guia- Gracia! And they can count two great, great grandfathers, too: Justiniano Asuncion (through Zacharias) and Antonio Asuncion (through Romana)- two great artists!

Mini reunion. This explains the intense drive and fascination of Noel and Ed in their search for the Asuncion roots! I met them last November 2012 in a restaurant somewhere in Ortigas, and this  intense discussion shown in this photo is not about the Menu for the dinner but about the family tree that Ed and Noel brought with them. We enjoyed the food, naturally, but we spent more time discussing the tree than eating that evening of November.

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Jun, Ed and Noel

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The Asuncion women

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Noel with daughter Anna

Now, with all this complexity because of internal marriages, how are we related really to one another? Taking Mariano Asuncion as common ancestor,  Juana Zalvedia  (Zacharia’s first wife) would be a niece to Justiniano,  a first cousin to Zacharias, first cousin a generation younger to Adonis;  Andres, Sr. being first cousin two generations younger and me first cousin three generations younger. Her daughters, Consuelo and Guia, formally speaking, were second cousins,- and yet were half-sisters, –  of Adonis, ( half-) aunts of Andres, Sr.  Now, to Guia’s daughter, Gracia, I would be a generation younger third cousin- while I’m a fourth  cousin to Ed and Noel, Gracia’s sons.

This picture would change, however, if we would take Zacharias as the starting point (common ancestor): Guia and Consuelo remaining as Adonis’ half-sisters; I become Gracia’s one generation younger first cousin while Ed and Noel being my second cousins. Making it more simpler, if we follow Macario’s line (remember Macario was also an Asuncion through Petronila) all the way to Antonio Asuncion and finally to the patriarch Mariano Asuncion, then Ed and Noel would appear as one generation younger fourth cousin to me. In truth, I’m younger than them. But why this?

(to be continued) jun asuncion

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The Moon Is Not Yet Round

by junasun

Ninong Ronnie just passed away… our thoughts and prayers are with him and may he rest in peace…

With him we have lost another one of the strongest pillars of Asuncion family. But he lives in our memories…

We sustain the family’s stability by being connected ever more. For what’s the use if we took everything for granted and if we kept  secret the things we know about our history? Knowing and appreciating one’s history strengthens identity and connectedness to one’s roots.

And one way of doing this is to continue the work that we have started here which is actually based on the early works of Dr. Ronnie Asuncion, et al.

So, pass around every helpful Asuncion “tidbit” if you have it. The article Tidbits from Sor Marissa was actually an e-mail which I received from my cousin Ed Rojas. I thank Sor Marissa for these tidbits which she shared to Ed. I mean these tidbits must be shared so that they won’t get lost forever. Dr. Ronnie had shared to us what he knew and so I really thank him so much.

With Zacharias, the Asuncions became connected with the town of Bulan. Coming from Sta. Cruz, Manila, I wondered how he must have felt on his first day in Bulan. I suspect well that his motivation in coming to Bulan was not business but his love –  if Zalvedia was a Bulaneña. He must have met  Juana Zalvedia – or any of these three women – somewhere in Manila and went to Bulan after this woman had left Manila for Bulan. Without internet and skype technology at that time, meeting  her in Manila was really the only way possible.

I don’t support the theory that he came to Bulan then in search of business for at that time- and even now- Bulan sounds like a place so far away from civilization. And the enormous exertions to travel with public transportation would surely kill your initial motivation. Unless it’s love- as we all know- for love moves mountains, conquers time and space.

So, if it was love then that explains why we love Bulan that much.

Here again that portion of Ed’s e-mail which I find extremely interesting and with questions posed which show Ed’s deep interest in his family’s history:

“Some tidbits from Sor Marissa:

1) Zacharias had a second wife after Juana Zalvidea & before his wife Remedios Ramirez. Her surname was Loilo. They had a child, but the child died, and in the Asuncion family tree we have, no mention of their names appeared.

2) Zacharias must have done well in Bulan, as he was able to send his children to Manila to pursue higher education. According to Sor Marissa, when Kenerino came back to Bulan after college in UP, he was shocked that his elementary classmates never got to higher education (no high school and no college). That inspired him to establish the Southern Luzon Institute, which later became SLI-KRAMS.

The information is interesting; because we know our great grandparents (generation of the children of Zacharias) got to finish college, so that must have been in Manila . And if there was no high school in Bulan then, they must have been shipped to Manila for high school at an early age and on to college.

In a past family get together, Auntie Nellie Intengan Jocson remembers her mother Consuelo Asuncion and aunt Ghia Asuncion (both daughters of Zacharias with Juana Zalvidea) were brought up by their unmarried aunt Benita, the older sister of Zacharias. Since Consuelo & Ghia knew Bicolano, can we assume they took their elementary schooling in Bulan? Was their aunt Benita also in Bulan during their elementary school days?

Or was Benita the guardian of Consuelo and Ghia when they had to go to Manila for high school? Who took care of their siblings Jacobo, Adonis, Justiniano, Kenerino, Rodolfo when they too had to go to Manila for high school and college?”

If Juana Zalvedia was from Bulan this would explain why her daughters Consuelo and Ghia Asuncion could speak the Bicol dialect and it’s highly probable that Consuelo and Ghia Asuncion grew up and did their elementary schooling in Bulan. Remember that Zacharias- speaking for sure only Tagalog and Spanish- also had to learn the Bulan dialect. So I don’t think he was to be credited much for his daughters’ Bicol language acquisition. Still, it needs to be clarified precisely which kind of Bicol dialect had Cosuelo and Ghia spoken for it would show with certainty the origin of their mother Zalvedia- and if Consuelo and Ghia really grew up in Bulan.

With Benita, the daughter of Justiniano and older sister of Zacharias, I assume she came with her ageing Father and Master Artist Justiniano to Bulan. An unmarried daughter usually looks after her ageing parents and – under favorable circumstances – also becoming a guardian to her own nephews and nieces. Such was the case of Benita – and this information is new to me and I’m really grateful to Benita- and to Consuelo and Ghia-  for probably also looking after my little lolo Adonis when he was a highschool and college student in Manila!

Bulan is such a significant place for the Asuncion of Justiniano’s line. In the meantime so many Asuncions have already left Bulan. For those Asuncions who are still in Bulan, learn to treasure your history and abide by the Asuncion’s heritage of hard work, scholarship, bravery and honest public service. Corruption is not an Asuncion trait.

As I have said, many have left Bulan but who knows how many will be coming back? The moon is not yet round. Goodbye Tio Ronnie…

Addendum (December 18, 2012)

Last November I met two relatives in Manila who came from the Ghia line. They were Ed and Noel Rojas. From them I have learned that Juana Zalvedia (first wife of Zacharias) and Zacharias were cousins! This overturned my assumption that Zalvedia hailed from Bulan. Zalvedia could only come from Manila- unless she and/or her family were already there in Bulan before Zacharias (This would discard then our knowledge that Zacharias was the first Asuncion who came to Bulan!). Or was Zacharias not alone but in the company of Zalvedia when he came to Bulan? Until now I have assumed that Zacharias came to Bulan all alone in search of his beloved. In the light of this new information that they were relatives, I now assume that Zacharias came to Bulan in search not for business opportunities in the first place but for a remote hideaway where he could live with his cousin and wife Zalvedia in peace, away from the Asuncions in Manila. I just assume as I please since this is my privilege being an Asuncion. I would be more than beyond the moon, however, if my assumption would turn out true or not. For that would mean we have moved a step forward again in our search for these tidbits of our past.

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