Four years ago, darkness enveloped the skies of Tacloban as the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yolanda. The clouds hang oppressively low as if sympathizing to the gloomy hearts of the Taclobanons. The streets — once crowded with happy Waraynons — turned dark and empty. Tacloban became a forlorn figure but with God’s mercy and blessings, it didn’t stay that way.
Today, the scenario is almost the same — minus the heavy hearts and the dark skies. As a result of the magnitude 6.5 earthquake (5.8 in our area), Tacloban and other areas in Visayas is swathed with darkness once again.
It’s almost like de javu especially when night time falls. Instead of hearing the laughter, conversations and the TV audio while watching Ang Probinsyano, all we could hear is a monotonous sound of humming. Although not pleasing to the ears, the noise coming from generators are the music in every street and in every barangay in Tacloban. Yes, no more disco music or night time sing-alongs from neighbors who are having nightly drinking sprees. In lieu of that, Taclobanons resort to playing cards with candle lights and telling Johnny Posong jokes, which are still funny even if we heard it over and over again.
For more than a week now, we got used to having candle light dinners, but at least we don’t eat sardines every day like the Yolanda days. While candle lights are okay, it is the scorching heat that pains us all especially those with kids and babies. Because of that, cardboard packagings are transformed into instant abanikos or pamaypays and malls are crowded with people who want to feel a little refreshed.
We don’t even mind going out wearing crumpled clothes because we would say, “An Yolanda ngani.” One thing I learned during the so-called Yolanda days is that looks don’t matter as long as you are alive. (lol) So in times like this, let us set aside our being maarte and just be thankful that everyone is safe in Tacloban.
As we endure dark and hot nights, we should always put safety first since there have been 3 fire incidents in the during of the blackout. In times like this, it isn’t just the acquisition of light and electricity that matters but also the safety of everyone.
Waiting For Power Restoration
While it’s brownout, there are never ending qualms and rants about power restoration. Well, we have the right to complain as consumers but we also need to understand that they are doing everything to restore the energy the soonest possible time because, like us, they are affected, too. At least now, with a few hours of electricity, we can charge our gadgets and light our homes. This is better than nothing at all.
So instead of muttering about the absence of electricity, we should be thankful that there are no casualties in Tacloban and no homes and buildings are destroyed. Instead of stressing yourself about how hot it is, why don’t you send some help for those in Ormoc, Kanangga and other affected areas? Why don’t you use your time to pray for the families who were displaced after losing their homes due to the successive tremors and why don’t you thank God that you are alive and safe?
This blackout might occur for weeks but it is better to live in darkness than not to live at all. It is just a matter of perspective. As I write this, the sun begins to set and darkness falls over Tacloban like a thick drape. But like all of us, I never lose hope that the bright lights will shine once again.
Let us continue to have faith. If we survived months of darkness after Typhoon Yolanda, then there is no darkness that we cannot overcome. The Waraynons and everyone affected by this earthquake shall rise again and shall return to our normal way of life like how we rose after Yolanda’s wrath. Kaya kapit lang bes. Kaya natin ‘to!