Published: October 5th 2009October 4th 2009
Right in makati! This one is right in front of our condominium building.
Typhoon Ondoy hit Manila last Saturday, September 26. It has been a week since, but the debris and heartbreaks left by the recent typhoon remain.......just as we braced ourselves for yet another typhoon.
The days that followed the September 26 typhoon and flooding in the metropolis were blurred. I am writing this now, as I nurture a bad cold and cough, while cooped inside the house hoping and praying the misery ends. I was thankful that my entire family was fine and kept dry, busy checking on friends and distant relatives , after Mother Nature wreaked havoc on our country's capital. I was also thankful for the calls and voices of concern from some friends and family , eager for reassurance that we are all fine. Some of my friends were not as lucky.
Nothing happens by accident. That's what everybody says. For the last 3 weeks, my lunch group can't seem to agree on a date to meet and enjoy lunch. We finally settled on September 26. Two girls in our group, each driving a car, decided to leave one car in her office and ride together. They also decided to leave the house early. Another
friend called to tell me that she would be on her way to fetch me as my house is along the way to where we decided to have lunch. Yet another left her house early , thinking traffic would be so bad and she wouldn't want to be so late. Except for me, who waited for my friend to fetch me, all of them left their houses and were on the streets when the rains poured relentlessly and the waters started rising. I heard a knock on my door as I was reminded by my nephew-in-law who lives across my condo unit that my car parked in the garage has water reaching the car flooring, and that the water was still rising. Imagine all that rain good for a month pouring in just 6 hours! One of the guys in the condominium building where we live offered to drive my car out of the parking slot up to the 2nd level ramp. Thank God he did, before the floodwaters reached my car's engine. Other cars completely "drowned" in the garage. Which is something that could have happened to my other friends' cars too if they did not leave their homes.
Where is the pool?
No trace of the pool inside the condo building.
Unfortunately for one of my friends, her entire bungalow was submerged in water that even the rooftop could not be seen. Her sister who lives with her, and her newborn baby, were mercifully moved out of their bungalow to the neighbor's 2storey house where they stayed 2 nights with 6 other families without food till they were rescued Monday morning.
Hundreds died, and hundreds more as Typhoon Ketsana went on its destructive path towards Cambodia and Vietnam. As we pick up the pieces, there was a renewed spirit of bayanihan
--- which literally means heroism, but now used to mean an act of helping one another. Back when I was younger and still in school, I remembered those nights where we got stuck in the school's dormitory because the entire area around the school was chest-deep in floodwaters. Many of us in our teens heeded the call to volunteer , and rather than worry, busied ourselves packing relief goods, distributing them, and sometimes simply taking care of a mother's children just so that mother can have a few hours of much-needed sleep. My niece's children who live next door are aged 11 and 8. They have
no idea how it has been for others who were left homeless, or worse, lost their loved ones. We brought them to relief centers where they joined many others sort out the donated relief goods and packing them into bags ready for distribution. They were the youngest volunteers and young as they were, were given simpler tasks such as folding clothes, or measuring rice into so many cups to fill up a bag, or simply blowing open the bags for others to fill up with relief goods. There was no small or big tasks. Everyone came to help. And it is never too late to help.
Some of my Filipino friends living abroad asked me how they can help. If you are reading this, you may want to check out another thread in this website ( Any TravelBlogger Stranded in Manila, Philippines?
) for the helpline contact details. God bless us all!
There are more photos below