The Aftermath

Howdy! I’ve been in oblivion for quite some time now with the coming and going of my California-based family and the crash for the nth time of our CPU. It happened almost the same time the typhoon Milenyo hit Metro Manila. Milenyo came without much warning, just an advice in the news that there will be no classes on that day. It was days of no electricity, no water, no phone. Our street was quite lucky though, the night Milenyo crashed into town, electricity came back. But no thanks to the typhoon, our house, sticking like a sore thumb, was the only one in our street with no electricity. A neighbor’s tree caused our cable to trip. And we ended up staying powerless for three more nights. I wanted to rush to our neighbor and demand some sort of explanation, as if there was some explaining to do, on why they allowed their tree to grow so high that it had to reach the Meralco cable, OUR Meralco cable. I wanted to blame them for the misfortune that beset us after Milenyo. They were, after all, the owners of the tree, but the calmer side of me won, and I left it as is, which I think was not a good idea because up to now I still hold a grudge on them. A day or two after the storm I saw them chopping down portions of the tree. Why do we act only after damage has been done? Which reminds me of the many vessels that have sunk at sea, for carrying too much passengers they say, and the many investigations and the stricter implementation of rules after the tragedy, as if to repair the damage, tsk, tsk.

On a lighter note, the nights without light brought me back to my childhood days, when my family would all gather in the living room, around one or two candles, and chat the night away. Sometimes my mom would see it as an opportunity to hone our mathematics skills by drilling us in addition, multiplication, etc. Other times we would gather around to pray the rosary, taking turns leading each decade. There were no mobile phones yet to pass the time, yet we got by somehow, and looking back, those days were quite fun.

Today, the days are hotter, the nights hotter still. It must be the environment that’s changing the weather. The nights we spent without electricity were like nights spent in Divisoria on a hot, sticky day as you literally rub elbows with everyone just to get done with your Christmas shopping. It meant lying in bed, all sweaty and cranky from lack of sleep, making use of a cardboard to fan my toddler, who is a few months shy of reaching the terrible twos. It meant days of eating adobo and kilos and kilos of longganisa because you had to cook everything there was in the freezer to not let them go to waste.

Now we move on. Milenyo has come and gone. The power and water supply are back, and our lives are back to normal. Till when, nobody knows.

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October 16, 2006. General.

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