It’s now Wednesday, two days after Bagyong Ondoy left. I am at my husband’s office somewhere in Eastwood. Here, life is normal. People are wearing nice clean clothes, plenty of moving vehicles are on the road, the buildings have electricity and internet, and most important of all there are plenty of food everywhere.
But from where we came from the scene couldn’t be so different. When we left our apartment, our jeans were rolled up to escape the muddy road that we had to walk on, the houses we passed by were dark because there was no electricity, damaged furniture and appliances on huge piles outside, people are walking with no slippers, cars were covered with mud and parked seemingly abandoned by the road, the sound of rescue helicopters were a normal sight.
Yes, we were in the midst of the disaster that was Ondoy. But unlike the others who suffered unbelievable damage we only lost our doorbell and out water motor to pump our water. It’s because we live in the third floor. It’s sometimes inconvenient but we couldn’t be any more grateful than we are right now to be living where we are currently living. I had a good feeling the first time I saw our current apartment. Never mind that it has a narrow passageway and doesn’t have a garage of its own. It was comfortable inside and now, it saved us from the huge flood that left almost all of Metro Manila underwater for two days. I have only gratitude in my heart because we were all at home safe and sound the time it happened. It was S’s restday, no school for Z, and it was Bam’s sem break. We really had no worries at first. We were confident the water will not reach us. S and I were talking if floods ever reach the second floor of a building much less the third floor. I kept racking my brain for videos of flood waters that I have watched on TV from the past. All I kept seeing was in the floods the roof of the houses were still visible (I presumed those were one-story houses) so I was at first confident we will be safe. Then by 5 pm the water kept on rising and S kept on saying how fast it was rising and that just a few inches more it will totally submerge the first floor. It was still raining non-stop with no sign of weakening. Then I suddenly remembered that I have seen on TV people hanging on for their dear life on top of trees. Why were they hanging on trees I thought and then it hit me, it’s because all of their houses were already underwater – the roof and all! That was when I became really scared.
Anyway, we all knew what happened after that. It stopped raining about 8 pm and the water receded the next day. We had no electricity for 11 days but we came out unscathed.