Overcoming Disaster – Typhoon Ondoy
December 9, 2009
Yesterday, I came to the realization that despite the growing pains that school, work and obligations throw at me – I am still lucky to be living in America. Why? While I was coming to this realization, the spiraling wrath of Typhoon Ondoy poured over a months worth of rain within 12 hours in the Philippines. There are at least 284 dead or missing as Metro Manila struggles to pick itself up from one of the country’s worst flooding in 40 years.
Whenever I read about how the Philippines gets randomly hit by these disasters I think to myself – why does MY motherland always get the raw end of the deal when it comes to natural disasters. I mean, I know that the country is smack dab in the middle of typhoon and earthquake zone – but does God really need to keep hitting them with the volcanoes, hunger, poverty, and political corruption too? Now that I think about it – maybe this flooding is a sign for the Philippine is start anew – like how God flooded the world when Noah built his ark to start all over again.
Anyway, in the newspapers they say that despite the flooding, extra police have been deployed to prevent looting in communities abandoned by fleeing residents. Many people have been complaining that relief aid has not been coming fast enough and conditions are worsening. Call me a sap but all I can think of when I read this are those thousands of homeless orphaned children on the streets trying to survive without the care of their parents. Or the old lolas and lolos who can no one to help them trudge through the muddy streets just so they can get food. Or even the fact that thousands of families are now left with almost nothing and have to build themselves up again from the rubble.
The one silver lining amidst this chaotic disaster is that the Filipino people never cease to amaze me is their ability to be courageous in times of despair. On TV, news crews interviewed a young woman in the middle of Metro Manila. Apparently, her and her 76-year-old wheelchair-ridden grandmother were stuck on their roof as floodwaters were rising. She thought they were both destined for death as they said their Hail Marys. Then, out of nowhere, her neighbors come to her help (risking their own lives, by the way) by carrying her grandmother and escorting her from danger.
My prayers and hopes tonight will be for those who were affected by this tragedy. Though, I have no doubt – the Philippine will rise from this crushing defeat and keep on keeping on.