The Legend of the First Butterfly
Aren't butterflies beautiful?
They sure are! and butterflies come in different colors. These creatures make a garden lovelier and there are people who had developed the hobby of butterfly gardening.
If you ever had wondered how did butterflies started or where did butterflies came from, this Philippine legend might just answer these questions.
Before I go on the legend, butterfly is called paru-paro in Tagalog which is the Philippine language. It might also have a bit of difference on the spelling as others spell it as "paru paro" while other Filipinos spell it as "paro paro."
And now on the legend.
As the legend goes
There was a couple who live in a nipa hut in a rural area on the foot of the hills in the province of Albay. The wife was currently pregnant at that time. The place was peaceful, the nipa hut was made from bamboo and the cogon grass. The couple planted vegetables and flowers and that's how they earn their living.
Soon the wife gave birth to two beautiful girls. They named them Amparo and Rosalina. The birth of the twins was such a joy but the mother died from giving birth. However, the three (the father and the two twins) continued their lives.
The two young kids was playful and energetic, and they are also very helpful as they help their father on tending the crops and harvesting those that are ready to be sold on the market. Amparo was known as Paro and the younger one, Rosalina was called as Rosa.
But tragedy doesn't end on their mother's death. Soon, their father died too from an illness when the twins was already 12 years old, leaving the twins to live on their own in their hut on the foot of the hill. They learned to cope on their own, continuing what their father had started doing as source of living. Their father had planted fruit bearing trees, vegetables and flowers. So Rosa and Paro started doing the same, they planted all kinds of vegetables and flowers on the land and tending on the fruit bearing trees their father had left. After picking up fruits, vegetables and flowers, the twins would sell all these together on the market. They could even reach every homes on their area and on the neighboring island just to sell.
But as months went by
Amparo's attitude has changed noticeably. Paro was always with Rosa before, unlike now, she's been lazy and hotheaded. She doesn't help Rosa anymore. And she won't even do house chores. Paro would just let Rosa do the watering and pulling off weeds on the garden. Cooking, dishwashing, and house cleaning annoys her. Rosalina DOES everything.
"Could you hurry it up Rosa?!" Paro, irritated, would yell to Rosa when Rosa was slow. That is mostly when Paro was hungry.
"I don't like this! Isn't there something else to eat?" Paro would angrily stamped her feet if she doesn't like the served food on the table.
It even makes her mad if the food was tasteless and she would just go back to sleep. This worries Rosa so much. Paro would spend the whole day smelling flowers on the garden.
The following day before the sun's up, Rosa was already on the farm watering flowers and picking up vegetables that she would sell on the market. But Rosa only got a little, maybe the crops are already old that they won't bear much for her to sell.
However, Rosa still went to the market to sell her crops. And she used the money she earned to buy rice and jerked fish. And guessed what she found on the nipa hut? Paro was still sleeping!
The two had a discussion
And Paro hurriedly went out the hut. She went to the garden first, picked one rose and head onto the river bank.
These made Rosa so sad and she kneel on the altar teary-eyed. She also saw the scattered rice and jerked fish on the floor. She wished to God that her twin's attitude would change.
Paro, on the other hand, was so entertained looking at her reflection on the river's clear water. By that time, the worried Rosa was already on her way. She decided to follow her twin sister to see how and what she was doing.
"Paro! Paro!" she called out to her. "Where are you Paro?" But Amparo didn't showed up. She had never been seen.
While the people are observing and waiting
for Paro's body to show up or float on the river, the people noticed a flower bud which is just about to open. They all watch this flower's slow movement, opening, blossoming.
To the flower's core was like a set of wings, with different colors. And to their surprise, a thing emerged from it. It flits and floats in air for a while before it took off. Rosalina and the neighbors followed the strange thing they hadn't seen before as it head to the garden, perching on each and one of the flowers, smelling each one.
Rosa's heart race and out of herself she had exclaimed, " Paro! Paro!"
The graceful and colorful new creature on the garden was soon called "paro paro" by the people. The flower lover creature.