This was for the third prompt of instagram’s #folktaleweek – witch. A common theme in local folktales in the Philippines revolved around the ‘albularyo’ or a witch doctor. They are able provide countercurses to spells or ‘barangs’ from witchcraft. But that does not mean they can’t do barangs themselves.
My grandfather was an albularyo. He was a jolly man but because of his reputation, I was secretly terrified of him. There were stories on how he got his powers which included catching the first drop of sap from a banana tree after midnight.
This scene was when he performed a ritual to cure my younger brother of a very high fever. There were burning of tree barks, applying a mixture of some herbal seeds, nuts and spit as ointment and a lot of incantations… Beats watching Netflix I tell you.