I was supposed to share a little story about my Ondoy experience, but this one needs more attention. So the Ondoy experience was pushed to the last part of this article.
CNN reported that another typhoon – a super typhoon estimated to have a sustained wind strength of 240KPH is expected to hit the Philippines in the next 24 hours (Friday to Saturday, October 2 to 3, 2009).
Named locally as Typhoon Pepeng, this category 4 to category 5 super typhoon is moving west-north-west direction with the probability of a landfall in eastern parts of Luzon – hitting the areas of Camarines, parts of Bicol, Aurora, then to Central Luzon and may affect areas in Metro Manila that were devastated by Typhoon Ondoy.
Local weather bureau Pagasa however told during a news conference today that Typhoon Pepeng will hit land on Saturday afternoon, or may change direction and head towards China, Japan or Hongkong.
Here’s the youtube video of the CNN report.
Whether these forecasts are accurate or not, people will have to be prepared. But if you’ve been to places like Marikina (where I live) which was turned into a vast wasteland, you will see grief, hunger, chaos and hopelessness you’ll wonder how those people left without homes, without food and without clothes will think of the days ahead.
Every time I go to a client in Quezon City after the Ondoy disaster, passing by Tumana Bridge is like a test of patience since the 15 kilometer drive to the client in Quezon City now takes about 2 hours due to the relief operations in the area, plus the big media outfits are mostly blocking the two-lane bridge with their trucks and communications equipments.
But at the same time, you see people walking in the mud in all directions, cars piled up along the road, houses destroyed, dead animals among the litters, and at some point, rescue workers retrieving dead bodies from the river below.
Sorry no photos posted here. Admittedly, I had the courage of taking a few shots inside my car – too ashamed of going out and taking a good shot at the action and ‘photo perfect’ situations – as some people may call it. But I chose not to post these photos.
Believe me, passing by the area is not for the faint of heart – the experience is so troubling, causing you grief and despair as well.
We’re one of the lucky few that were spared from the flooding – dirty, muddy water which destroyed everything in its path. Even at this time, several areas are without electricity. Our DSL internet just restored today.
Now looking forward, the future is looking dim, even darker for those ravaged by Typhoon Ondoy. A super typhoon of 240 kilometers per hour isn’t a joke. I remembered when Cebu was hit by Typhoon Ruping in the early 90’s which also had a wind strength of 220 to 240 KPH.
Ruping was so strong it can move a car parked with handbrakes on. It crippled Cebu for more than a month.
Now is the time the government should do something right – not as helpless and dis-organized during the first crucial hours of the Ondoy aftermath.
And now is the time people listen to what the government says – and minimize if not eliminate loss of lives. Even if the coming days looked so dark, it should give us the will to move on and live life to the best we could.
By the way, it’s now raining hard in Bicol (time is 10:35pm, October 31, 2009) and winds are starting to blow stronger.