MANILA, Philippines – Paying a visit to the grave of a dearly departed is a normal practice during the observance of All Souls’ and All Saints’ days. But actually visiting your own grave while still alive is creepy to others.
Headstone of Carlos 'Boy' Castillo
Carlos “Boy” Castillo’s grave has a tombstone ready for any eventuality. But since the event of his death has yet to come, there’s no date on the tombstone except for the words “coming soon”.
“They can't believe I have the guts to do that. Some say I'm crazy. it was posted sa Facebook,” said Castillo.
The 62-year old man follows the tradition of visiting the graves of his father, cousin, and his very own, at the Himlayan Cemetery in Tanauan City, Batangas.
It was in 1995 when the remains of his father were transferred to the Himlayan Cemetery.
"We were one of the pioneers here na naglibing sa tatay. Pero ang tatay byahero yan e. Noong namatay siya inilibing namin muna sa kabila. Ma-trapik papunta dito, inilipat ko sa Marikina sa Loyola tapos nung nagbukas yung SLEX ibinalik ko dito. Tapos nag open ito inilagay ko siya dyan," he said.
There were no other tombs beside it so he decided to have his own grave next to his father’s.
"Bilang isa sa pinakauna, naawa naman ako sa tatay nagiisa lang siya dyan so nagpaggawa din ako ng lapida ko. Ayan nga may date of birth, walang date of death saka sa baba 'coming soon'. Para at least may kasama siya," he said.
Whenever he visits, he would always make it a point to light a candle and offer flowers to the graves, including his very own.
Castillo, who already went through a quadruple bypass heart surgery, is not afraid of death.
“Why be afraid of death? Darating naman talaga yun. Kung sakaling dumating yung time ko mayroon na din akong naisulat. Ganyan na din. Ilalagay lang yung date of when I die tapos aalisin na yung 'coming soon'. Ang ilalagay na 'I'm here now',” he said. Val Balita, ABS-CBN News