Monday, September 28, 2009

Climate Change Is Certainly Very Real

Hi. Just want to let you all know that we're fine. We left for Laguna early last Saturday, taking the Rizal route. We got "stranded" a few times, the interior of the car got wet, and once we could feel the car being borne by a mini wave, but, by God's grace and protection, we were safe the entire time. Husband had a photo shoot in a resort in Sinaloan(?) and, yeah, we basically did not realize that 30 days worth of rainfall would fall in under six hours. The first time we got stranded, we were two kilometers away from our destination. We vacillated about continuing or turning back. Fortunately, we picked the right move and braved the flooded two kilometers left (as opposed to the, well, I'm not a good judge of distance, but going back meant passing through at least 7 other municipalities, all flooded). Husband's strategy was to wait for huge trucks or buses and, like some parasite, tailgate it through the flooded areas (the large vehicles parted the waters, not exactly in biblical terms, but it was wondrous enough to let our compact - hooray for Ude, our little Honda Civic and, oh, thumbing our noses at those who smirked whenever they passed by us, thinking, hahaha good luck to you and your non-4WD). The final stretch of flood was a long one and, oh my, look at that sign that says "Caution: Flood Prone Area". Really. The place was flood prone during normal rainy weather. What this weekend was far from normal. Useful sign, that. I'm not sure what it's supposed to do though ,except state the very painfully obvious perhaps. Anyway, we got stranded again. Waited a couple of hours, I think. Barged in on locals and brazenly asked to use their bathroom. The flood ebbed a little, enough to let Ude pass through it. Yay! And that's when we were confronted with a bridge, probably about 50 meters away from the resort, closed off by the military because it had a crack. We waited a bit until our light vehicle was allowed to pass through (see all y'all large 4WDs later). Anyway, we finally got to the resort and it was flooded. It was a day of waiting and water. That show was probably brought to you by the letter W. Finally got to watch Cars and Across the Universe (Nothing's gonna change your world? Try climate change). Anyway, we were well fed and safe the entire time. I'm not going to complain. I won't even dare. It was a horrible weekend with much devastation and many lives lost. It's definitely a dark time for us here in the Philippines.

I think for the first time in... well, ever, our church didn't hold the Sunday Service. All of our church members are fine although some had to be evacuated from their homes. Many of us had their houses flooded, my parents included. They're fine, but the entire house is muddy. Many of the appliances are goners. Many of the clothes (we actually still have some there) had been submerged in the water. Now, it's time for cleanup, but, of course, the washing machines are probably busted. I want to go there and help clean up, but one of Mark's clients is insisting on a meeting (um, hello, we're under a state of calamity?). I mean, if Congress suspended its session so the affected solons can clean up their houses (I heard that on the radio on our way home yesterday and that did not sit well with me at all... I thought the radio announcer was going to say so they could devote their time to assisting their constituents, but no, the suspension was for their own personal houses which were probably going to be cleaned by their legions of househelp anyway), why can't the normal person be expected to do the same? Talk about insensitivity and lack of consideration. Our apartment is fine, but we would like to help my folks out. This is some serious cleaning they're facing. The power is still out over there, probably for safety reasons. Mud from the mountains (oh, to live in a valley, no matter how beautiful - whatever. I still love Marikina! It's a town my own forebears helped build. It's part of my identity.) is all over everything. It's not your usual flood filth and yuck. It's thick clay. And then, of course, most of their things have been damaged. Transitioning back to normal takes time. How can some people act as though nothing but a simple drizzle happened? Whatever. (Husband will go to your dumb meeting. Hopefully, you'll realize that you can be a scumbag. - okay, that's it. I promise no more namecalling during this difficult time.)

We took the SLEX route on our way back since Rizal was still pretty much flooded.
Husband found it in his heart to be a proper tourist and bought lanzones and kesong puti from roadside stalls. We passed through such interesting towns. Normally, we would have stopped and checked them out, but since times were thus, we'll have to do it another time. I believe we're going back at the end of October. Maybe then. In the interim, prayers and active participation in efforts to restore things to normal. Btw, we learned on our way home that a couple of those soldiers from the closed off bridge went missing during rescue efforts. One private at that time had been found dead, but they said that before he succumbed to the waters, he had already been able to save the lives of 20 individuals. That's a true soldier and hero right there.

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