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Ondoy, Two Years,Hence September 28, 2011

Posted by pilibustero in Personal.
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Exactly two years ago on Monday, I was born again. Yes I cheated death when I, together with four other companion, survived one of the most terrifying ordeal I had so far: defying the wrath of typhoon Ondoy (Ketsana) that unfateful day (between 11am to 4pm) of Sept 26. I so believe in second chances, and this was reaffirmed by such an experience, especially when your life is at stake at that moment. Nevertheless, the focus and the will pushed me to my limits and conquer the fear to face the adversity before us. Who would have thought that in just a matter of hours (probably 5 hours), the house that we were in along Tumana river in low-lying Marikina City will be submerged completely in muddy flood water. In no time, we found ourselves on top a neighbor’s roof, way higher than our bungalow house, but not without scratches and cuts when we pushed ourselves up a cemented wall and several moments of indiscretion. That is when I found my way out of the house on to the back exit, and when I was already clinging to a tree branch towards the wall, it broke and rendered me gasping for air as I almost drowned. Then when I was already pushing my self up the wall, my hand slipped just as it was held by a companion. But adrenaline rushed through my system, and safely, I reached the roof.

Soaked and very cold, we were stranded in the roof for the next four hours when we decided to braved the deep raging flood water. But how? Indeed, necessity is the mother of invention, and creativity and resourcefulness are her sons. Using only loose bamboo poles from a neighbor’s garden that our companion (who’s a good swimmer) collected, he turned it into a makeshift raft using around ten poles. And with the aid of power lines, Meralco I guess, we paddled and swam ourselves to safer grounds, several hundred meters from where our house was. Again, not without further slight injuries. Fortunately, another companion secured some amount (he placed in a wrapper) so we were able to buy something to eat & drink.And just before it got dark, we were already on a taxi towards UP campus to spend the night in a friend’s house. It was there that I realized that I just survived Ondoy.

In the aftermath of Ondoy.

*photo by vincent