Haiyan – From [A Very Safe] Distance

The Calm Before the Storm


I was comfortably flattened on our bed when i fired my television. As I slowly drifted to a deep concentration, well, actually, more of going to a deep sleep – the little remaining consciousness was able to vaguely pick an announcement from our President, something about a super typhoon and that he is urging everybody to prepare. I drifted, slowly drifted – then there was peace. I woke up early for I had a consultancy gig to attend to. Not really paying attention to whatever has lingered in my slumber and went about my normal routine. I was too busy that day that I practically cut out any outside communication – even a wee bit of concern to a creeping disaster in our horizon… and she came.


Even children had to get food from abandoned stores in Tacloban city to survive.
(Grabbed from rappler.com)


Storm Surge in Samar.
(grabbed from philstar.com)


A street in northern Cebu after being hit by Typhoon Yolanda.
(grabbed from newsinfo.inquirer.net)


Tears fell, my heart sank and you would just want to call everybody in your phonebook and tell them you love them. We only felt I guess a fart of Yolanda while she was pounding other areas but you can sense in my Kababayans that they were (and still are) very concerned.   Everybody, and I mean everybody I came across with wore this aura of great loss. Social media was even worse. I’ll just shake my head in utter disappointment to netizens who did not help improve the situation. I wouldn’t even dare say that I can imagine how the victims felt after. When we are in pain, instinctively, we would want to ease the burden by sharing it. Though some won’t admit, but we long for sympathetic ears, warm hugs and kind words. But how can our victims unload when everybody around them is in the same situation. Where even the air you breathe gives you pain and everywhere you look -there’s anguish staring right back at you. Again, I wouldn’t even dare say I can imagine what they went and are going through – it’s just unfair to do so.


A family as they go to an evacuation center in Cebu City. (Grabbed from http://globalnation.inquirer.net)


Sheena Junia literally surfed Haiyan’s waves to survive.
(Photo grabbed from Sheena’s Facebook Account)

Nay packed some of our clothes (mostly unused, definitely not worn out) and other things we can donate. Stashed up some cash intended for sharing.  Coordinated with friends and shared ideas how we can lend our hands and our hearts. Enlisted my “hands and strength” to help rebuild. My band mates were also more than happy to play for benefit gigs. We quietly did our thing.


We Are ONE


Help came from all places. Quite literally. Despite the awful print that Yolanda left – the Almighty reminded us of LOVE when it came pouring as the entire world gave a very warm and generous embrace to the Filipino soul.


Jamie Oliver asking people to donate and help the victims of Typhoon Yolanda.
(Grabbed from Jamie Oliver’s Instagram Account)


Doug Baldwin, Jr. carries the Philippine flag upside down before the start of a game against the Minnesota Vikings.
“We are fighting the devastation of Haiyan which has been worse than many war-torn regions of the world.”
(Photo grabbed from Seahawks’ Twitter account)


Bad PR


Yes, our politicians suck big time. But not all! Negative propaganda is everywhere! Yes, I say propaganda which goes both ways – to those politicians who insensitively placed their names on the labels of goods; incompetent and just plain useless “public servants” and to those who just won’t stop bashing them – yes, we get it, they are an awful kind of species that don’t deserve to be tagged under Homo Sapiens. Can we like go to the right avenue and save everyone the drama. If people want to educate, I believe it can be done more intelligently. If you are going to paint a picture, make sure that you cover both faces. There are far more responsible Government officials who work tirelessly who will be unfairly dragged in your general-corrupt-list (take Atty. Leni Gerona Robredo as a great example). You don’t throw an entire basket of tomatoes just because you see few rotten pieces, right?


Congresswoman Leni Robredo with staff after Yolanda hit the Bicol Region. (Photo grabbed from Leni Robredo’s Facebook Account)


Yolanda, well, she was the biggest bitch. No matter how much you make of it – she was a disaster in every sense of the word.  We need to move on. Moving on means – first, we ease their pain. How? We can start by feeding them. With the amount of help we received, this shouldn’t be an issue. Please. Second – Rebuild and rehabilitate. Please bring in the Palafox clan so we can have an effective urban plan with our nature in mind (I’m not very familiar with their work, but I have seen them in interviews and I share their vision). Lastly – Heal. This is a very long process, but can only be achieved if the ones who will help have no hidden schemes. Oh and we should take note of the things we learned so the devastation won’t be as severe next time – coz there will definitely be a “Next Time”.


Grabbed from Sec Jesse’s Twitter Account.

I believe God is always with us. Babangon ang Pilipinas.


*We do not own the pictures.

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