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Typhoon ONDOY
Personal Experiences

Munting Nayon News Magazine
The Netherlands
September 28, 2009



Karanasang sulat ni Julian Quinabo


Requested for posting, as emailed by Cynthia Reoma
October 6, 2009


Klasmeyts,

Simula nang lumipat kami sa Meycauayan, nasanay na kami sa baha, two or three times a year.

But last Saturday, September 26, was the Apex of all baha I have experienced.

Early morning, may baha na CR namin. Ginising ako ng Misis ko kasi papunta siya at Panganay ko sa kasal. May tubig na rin sa garahe. I thought it was only one of those floods we had, na hanggang sakong lang. Kung tumaas man, mga ikalawang baitang ng hagdan namin. Kami lang ng bunso ko ang naiwan sa bahay.

Mamaya, mga around 9AM, pumasok na tubig sa kusina. Tapos tuloy tuloy na ang pagtaas ng tubig. Taas kami ng taas ng mga gamit namin, pinagpapatong patong. Mamaya nabuwal dahil sa taas na ng tubig. Tapos nang malapit ako sa matataas naming socket ng kuryente, bigla akong kinalambre. Langoy sisid ako papunta sa fuse box. Sa takot, automatic sa akin to, I started praising God. I thought paglapit ko sa fuse box, that's it, kuryente na ako, good bye na.

Sa awa ng Diyos, with presence of mind, naibaba ko switch. I told my daughter na umakyat na dahil its useless. Sumisisid na ako ako. My daughter is taller than me. Sinubok kong lumabas ng bahay para alamin ang kalagayan ng biyenan ko't bayaw. Di ko na kaya, sumasabit na ulo ko sa sampayan. kasabay ko nang lumulutang ang washing machine namin at ibang bagay.

Lumalangoy na ako. Lampas pa ng gate na taas ng tubig. Pantay na ng dulo ng bintana ang tubig baha. Pasok na ako sa loob ng bahay. Bahala na ang Diyos sa aming mag-ama. Tumaas pa tubig, habang kabado kami ng Anak ko sa second floor. Mamaya, bumigay na ang bookshelf/divider namin, kasama computer at TV na nakapatong dito. Lungkot na lungkot ako sa nangyari sa mga libro kong pinag-ipunan ko nitong 31 years na pagtuturo. 1/2 ng library ko, nilunod ng baha. I was really so down.

While restlessly lying in bed, unsure kung hanggang saan pa aabutin ng baha, I saw in mind the face of our Lord Jesus, assuring me my daughter and I will be okay. Nakatulong rin ako kahit papaano.

Dumating mag-ina ko galing sa kasal with their own tale of stranded adventure sa Greenhills. It was only then that they saw the devastation that the raging flood did to our house and our belongings. It was only that early morning that we noticed, nabuwal ang gilid ng pader namin dala ng lakas ng flood waters.

We still have food. Nakapag grocery si Misis last week. Nabasa partly ang lalagyan namin ng bigas. So we will run out of rice in the next few days..

While all these were happening, I was in touch, through txt msges with Cynthia, Gil's husband.

In fact, in so short a time, she has about 1 sack of clothing for me and my kids. Wow, mahirap tumutulong sa kapwa mahirap.. Mahirap yatang paniwalaan yon. But she was insistent. Baka ipadala niya ito sa yo Gerry Boy T. God bless this goodhearted wife of Gil!

Sanay na kami ng pamilya ko sa baha. Pero itong nangyari last Saturday, grabe.

Second day na kami naglilinis ng Misis ko ng bahay. Pumunta lang ako sa highway, para bumili ng ulam at tinapay. May incognitong mabait na nilalang na nagpadala ng pera through my bank account.

You too will have your own experience, if you're not experiencing it now.

It may come in any of the four elements: Fire, earth, water or wind. You may be depressed, saddened or see this differently. I choose the latter. As I told you last time, same problems, a new mindset.

So also with this unforgettable experience with water. As a well known author puts it: "After a typhoon, when I visit the my beachhouse, I expect a new beach."

This is what I'm looking forward to Classmates. A new and better outlook in life. Something really alive and living; not from books I've long treasured. From the book of my life. And believe me. one of the most memorable and enjoyable chapter of my life-book, was when you entered into my life about 39 years ago.

By the way, I had a warm bonding with Fr. Manny. He promised to keep in touch. We had common friends, the Pamplona ladies of Las Pinas.. He bade us good-bye just hours before he boarded his plane for the US. He left and then, a few days after -- The Flood of September 26, 2009.

Julian Quinabo


Gawad Kalinga's Don Manuel Village
September 30, 2009


Sa Don Manuel ay wala naman na namatay, Thanks God. Tumaas ang tubig mga 6 feet above ground level sa mga bahay na tabi ng ilog. Sa Plaza naman where the building of SIBOL is ay below knee naman. Ung third floor ng building ay ginawang refugee center ng mag tao. Nabasa at namaga ang wood parquet flooring nito kaya natuklap ang iba nito at ang iba naman ay nagwarp. Hopefully ay magreturn ang flooring to normal pagnatuyo ang mag ito.

Wala naman akong nabalita na nasaktan pero maraming ariarian ang nadamage at napunta na lang sa basura gaya ng upuan, mesa, aparador, damit at sapatos at iba pang mga kagamitan. Pagkain at malinis na tubig ang kanilang immediate needs nila. Natugunan naman ito the next day ng bagyo (ang gagyong Ondoy ay noong Sept 26, 2009) nang nagbigay ang CFC, GK, Ateneo, St Theresa's College at pribadong sector gaya ng Republic Flour Mills (RFM), Belman Laboratories, local government officials, at mga personal donors ng mga bigas, delata, tinapay, biscuit, mineral water, lugao at noodles.

[rltd]Related Topic*Don Manuel GK Village*Con Amor[/rltd]Okey naman ang mga teachers at SIBOL kids at safe naman. No classes at monday hopefully ay magresume na ang klase. We are always praying na makarecover kaagad ang Don Manuel. Ang mga karatig pook nito ay mas severely damaged where you see lives lost (seven children) tinangay ng tubig at di pa natagpuan, homes and properties lost. Ang gobyerno ay naoverwhelm with their limited relief. Priority ng gobyerno ang Rizal, Pasig at Marikina at yong worst hit areas. About 250 ang casualties overall. Many GK areas (Tatalon, Sto Domingo, San Antonio, etc) were badly damaged. Many roads are impassable because of garbage, rocks and mud. Hopefully mareresolve ang mga ito in few weeks time.

Ang SIBOL school ay hopefully malinis sana uli ito at mapinturahan at marepair ang flooring at magkaroon na sana ng mga cabinet para di na mabasa ang mga gamit ng mga bata at teachers. Please pray for us.

Bro. Chris
Manila
September 30, 2009


A NOTE FROM A CLOSE FRIEND BETSY OF THE STUDENT AFFAIRS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES - Jojo Taduran


Dear friends,

You must have been seeing on tv and the internet images of the horrible situation in Luzon, including Manila, during and after storm Ondoy. Mercifully, we were not affected adversely by the massive flooding. We are on a high enough spot and did not suffer worse than wet furniture in the patio.

My husband Roger was in Nasugbu, Batangas at the time and, apart from the inconvenience brought about by the power outage, was not uncomfortable. My daughter Rachel was (still is) in Bohol and did not experience anything apart from light rain. We were constantly in touch via cell phone but many times the signal was spotty. My two boys and I monitored the situation in the safety of our home. My sisters and brothers and I also monitored each other's situation. Except for one sister, who endured knee-deep water in her home, we were all ok. Our parents were also safe in their home and were also on a high enough spot.

So many were not so lucky, as the coverage on tv, which has been round the clock since Saturday, shows. There are several relief operations and evacuation sites, including some on our campus. As of this writing, around 240 people are dead, hundreds are missing, hundreds of thousands are homeless, hundreds of thousands are left with severely damaged homes and have lost practically everything. One hears too many stories of people unable to save anything due to the quick rise in flood waters, which trapped countless people on the second floors of their homes, many others on their rooftops, with no drinking water, food or clothes other than what's on their backs.

One can only stare in disbelief at pictures of streets that turned into angry rivers; whole communities immersed in a sea of debris floating violently on flood waters; cars slamming into each other as they followed the furious waves; people in panic, fleeing to higher ground, retreating to their rooftops, walking on electric cables to avoid 20-foot-deep waters, clinging to anything as the waters took them...

And now that the waters have receded, we are revolted by the horrible sight of knee-deep mud; the strange image of furniture, appliances and debris hanging from trees; the devastation everywhere. At the same time we are in awe of nature's might and its fury.

Ondoy brought more water than Hurricane Katrina in the US; the equivalent of a month's rainfall in the span of just six hours on an already saturated ground due to weeks of unusually high levels of rain. Worse, authorities had to release water from two dams to avert the bursting of the dam walls, contributing to the flooding.

Classes have been suspended this week. Many people have been unable to report for work, having to attend first to the more immediate problem of burying the dead, looking for lost loved ones, cleaning their homes or whatever is left of their homes, recovering from the shock, and rebuilding their lives. People seem to be walking in a daze - perhaps having difficulty comprehending the tragedy that befell them.

It's terrible.

Take care.

Love,

Betsy

As emailed by Jojo Taduran
Toronto-Canada
September 29, 2009




Ophelia Bakker


Manila, September 27, 2009

As far as I can remember in all of my 60 plus years, there never was a time that a typhoon covered an area as vast as this typhoon Ondoy did. Starting in the Bicol regions to the Mindoros, to the provinces of Quezon, Batangas and Rizal and its townships of Taguig,Teresa, Taytay, Morong, Cainta, Antipolo and Marikina, which town was the worst hit, which dislocated residents who had to climb rooftops for safety and hv not been rescued as I write. I did not realize that the steady light raining yesterday morning when I went out at 6am, would bring about the devastation I experienced from yesterday afternoon and w/c devastation I am witnessing now.

As I write on my Blackberry, it is 4:45 in the morning, I am sitting inside my car, with my driver Danny and my best friend, Cecille, we are parked at Sumulong Highway infront of Masinag market where we, along with hundreds of motorists are waiting for the neckdeep water going to Marikina to subside.

Defense 4ecretary cabalen Gilbert Teodoro has been on the field all this time hv been on the road, monitoring rescue operations. Imasgine 341mlm of rainfall equals more than a month of continuous rain..whew! More on this later today when Icn send more news from my home computer folks..I .hope I can go home soon, I am so tired and sleepy and I am going low bat now

Offie


Vic Rosales


The weather disturbance was given the name ONDOY, when it really should have been UNGOY. I have never in my life seen such a steady and heavy downpour, so much so that after six or so hours of it, I remarked to the wife that we should probably get in touch with Noah.

Our two physician children were unable to get home from the Univesity.

The older boy spent the night in the car, stranded in the flood and the girl had to sleep at the University [well, my wife and I have had to do that twice].

Fortunately, none in the family suffered serious damage to their homes except perhaps for some leaking from the roof.

Thanks.
VICRosales


Ate/Auntie Josie


Dear family,

God is good! God spared our loved ones from this typhoon that devastated Metro Manila.

I am glad to say that we have heroes in our family. Bennett yesterday bought a rubber boat, brought her van filled with food and stuff to the Rosario bridge in Pasig, left it there with her friend Pinky, and with brother Arthur went by boat to the house where Neneng and family had been holed up for 2 days, already running out of water and food they were sharing with other families there. It was their neighbor's house that had a 3rd floor. Their house is only a bungalow and was totally inundated, including their 2-month old Honda Civic.

It's a good thing, both Bennett and Arthur are trained divers. They wore their diving gears knowing they may have to dive. But the water they went through is not like clear sea water, it was murky water with lots of debris along the way, some sharp, really dangerous. I heard now that Arthur almost drowned in that operation. Bennett said her adrenalin was so high, they had to go on even when she knew it was very dangerous and one or both of them may lose their lives.

There were a lot of other people already in the area trying to save their own families/friends stuck in private houses/bldgs. because government rescue teams were somewhere else and were too few and too slow. The whole Marikina, Cainta, Pasig, and parts of Quezon City, were flooded, many houses were totally buried in water, people were on top of roofs to save themselves.

As soon as Bennett and Arthur were able to extract Neneng and family from the house (total of 10 including in-laws and a friend of one of the daughters stranded with them), they were brought to her van and fed. They had brought cooked food from Sucat enough to feed a whole barangay and left all the food in the van. Bennett earlier reserved 2 big studio units in Balay to accommodate the group.

Would you believe, Balay was full on Saturday evening because we also had stranded guests who attended a birthday party here? At least, they have checked out when Neneng's group came in. I also had rice cooked for them and I asked our maid to cook sinigang na bangus that I earlier bought. It was almost 9:00 pm when we went home together because we were busy preparing things and waited until everyone had settled.

When I heard the voice of Neneng's youngest call out for me as they arrived in Balay, I ran out and embraced him, so glad that they came out of it all alive and healthy. They were all wet and had nothing else to wear. Bennett bought new briefs for the 2 boys (Neneng's son and sister-in-law's son) and Neneng's husband, panties for the girls and oldies, aside from basic supplies needed to survive. I gave them 2 plastic bags of clothes and slippers that I had earlier packed at home. They were all used right away.

As I was listening to the public service of the different radio stations last night, I still heard many calls from those still stuck in houses and buildings in the same area where Neneng came from. They were asking for food and water because they had been stuck there for 2 days, children were crying and all wet. It was so depressing, I can't help but cry and just pray for them to be saved.

Today, Bennett and Pinky came back with more goodies to be brought to the other people stuck in the place where Neneng came from. Neneng's eldest daughter, a 4th year UP student, texted her classmates who came with more goodies, old clothes and footwear.

They all assembled here in our lobby to repack the items in ziplock to be given per family or per individual. Bennett brought 2 dozen eggs that I boiled, while they repacked salt individually, then prepared sandwiches. Everything was ready after about 2 hours.

Bennett and Pinky left with Neneng and husband to bring the relief items to others they left behind, including their driver with his family and a month-old baby. Bennett brought Pampers for the baby too.

Pray that we will all be able to get through this. Neneng just lost her father a few weeks ago, now she has to face another trial. When she cried, Bennett knew she had to do something to help her dear cousin.

I have called up Boy and Ate Laura to ask for old clothes they can give the family. Bennett will pick them up later to bring to Neneng. If you have clothes to spare, please gather them and send them in a Balikbayan box as soon as possible. Thanks.

Let's all pray for them and all those still out there especially the children. Take care and God bless us all!

Ate/Auntie Josie
Manila
September 28, 2009

Papaya School

Kasiglahan, Rizal, net buiten Quezon City
op ongeveer 10 minuutjes rijden van de Payatas vuilnisbelt..

Geachte relatie,

Via het journaal heeft u het waarschijnlijk al gezien of gehoord; Manila (Filippijnen)is vreselijk getroffen door een enorme tyfoon. Het aantal doden is nog niet definitief vastgesteld, maar loopt nog steeds op, straten staan volledig onder water, huizen zijn weggespoeld en vele mensen verloren al hun bezittingen.

Omdat we uiteraard van vele kanten vragen kregen over de ramp en het effect op onze projecten daar ter plaatse, beloten we u deze mail te sturen.

Voor zover nu bekend, zijn er onder de mensen van de Papaya school geen slachtoffers, maar wel in de directe omgeving van de school. Daarom dient de Papaya School momenteel (net als bij een tyfoon een aantal jaar terug) als evacuatiecentrum. Mensen uit de omliggende sloppenwijken die hun huis niet in kunnen of hun huis en al hun bezittingen hebben verloren, verblijven op dit moment op de school en er worden noodpakketten uitgedeeld. Ter plaatse wordt aan vrienden en bekenden gevraagd om dekens, kleding, voedsel, geld, medicijnen, meubels en speelgoed en artsen komen deze middag naar de school om waar nodig assistentie te verlenen.

Omdat onze mensen ter plaatse uiteraard vooral druk zijn met het verlenen van directe hulp en bovendien de communicatievoorzieningen in het getroffen gebied momenteel heel slecht zijn, kunnen we nog geen uitsluitsel geven over de status van de Papaya leerlingen, de Apple scholars, het personeel en het schoolgebouw. Voor alsnog gaan we er - zoals eerder in deze mail geschreven - vanuit dat voor deze mensen en de gebouwen de schade beperkt is gebleven.

Uiteraard leven we erg mee met de mensen die veel enstiger zijn getroffen, want de verslagenheid onder deze slachtoffers is enorm. Het betreft vooral de allerarmsten die al weinig hadden en nu ook 'dat weinige' hebben verloren. Voor deze mensen is geen hulp vanuit overheden of verzekerings-potjes. Ze zijn over het algemeen helemaal op zichzelf aangewezen en moeten straks alles opnieuw opbouwen... We vinden het fijn dat we deze mensen in deze moeilijke tijd kunnen ondersteunen door de school voor hen open te stellen en waar mogelijk hulp te bieden, maar we hopen natuurlijk vooral dat iedereen weer snel en veilig naar zijn/haar eigen huis kan terugkeren.

Met vriendelijke groet,
Namens Stichting Kalinga
Janneke Heinen
www.kalinga.nl
See photo gallery: Images of Typhoon Ondoy: Stichting Kalinga-Papaya School

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