Teary-eyed, I want to share what happened to my hometown just recently.
Early in the morning, just clocked out from my online job, my kids were watching television, my cousin washed his motorcycle, my sister-in-law prepared breakfast, we heard a very loud roaring sound. I thought it was just an airplane because there is an airport near our place and we often hear that sound. But it was too loud, unusual. I became worried because there was an incident here where an helicopter crashed to homes and many people were killed. I went out to check what’s really happening. Approaching the main door, my figurines fell, the things in the house trembled, and my neighbors were running. Not knowing what’s the cause, I grabbed my kids and cellphone and ran barefooted. Outside, I met other parents carrying their kids screaming “linog linog” (“earthquake”). Then I saw the parked vehicles swaying. My knees can’t hold strong so I squatted at the middle of the road. Though my hands were trembling, I managed to send messages to my loved ones. I can’t call them. There was no signal and the electricity was out too.
Still outside, I surfed through my mobile internet.
A magnitude 7.2 earthquake hits Bohol, Philippines at 8:12 am. The epicenter is Sagbayan. I am from Tagbilaran City but not currently living there, however, my family and relatives are. My parents and youngest sister, Angeline, are in Tagbilaran City while my relatives are scattered in the towns of Catigbian and Carmen.
News are all over the media. The thought that it’s like 32 Hiroshima bombs struck Bohol is devastating. I can just imagine the tremor it caused. Bohol and Cebu are declared a state of calamity as Cebu is also affected, where my kids, younger siblings and I are making a living.
When everything was calm, I went back inside the house and grabbed my emergency bag which contains clothing, water, and important family documents.
It’s heartbreaking to see these iconic and centuries-old churches were crumbled to pieces on ground and everything that’s left are only memories now.
Our churches may have been down and shaken but not our Faith. It’s time to rebuild our Faith and build stronger churches.
Bridges collapsed and roads were torn. They were not passable. Victims struggling to evacuate cannot go through. Even the rescuers, media and relief operations were not easy. Municipal halls were also damaged. Barangay election is approaching but will be postponed. This could be an eye opener to every officials. Election is not about money, votes or fame but service. If you want to win a position now, this is your chance to prove that you are capable of serving your constituents.
I could say dreams were shattered in just 3 minutes. Years have been spent to build dream houses and own dream cars and other properties but in a snap, they all vanished. Some houses were not totally destroyed but they’re not livable already.
Those are some of things that we endured here on earth but the priceless treasure we have to keep is our families. It doesn’t matter if houses were crushed as long as our dear loved ones are safe. We can’t be homeless forever, houses will be rebuilt but lives could no longer be recovered.
Over 400 families were affected and some sought shelter at the open grounds of CPG Sports Complex.
Our prestigious Chocolate Hills were also destructed. The hills were deformed due to landslides and the famous viewing deck collapsed. This is a nightmare for all of us Boholanos. Chocolate Hills is one of the scenic spots in Bohol which made the province as a tourist destination and boost Bohol’s economy. After the earthquake, what will happen?
Mga Sano ug Sano, we are known to have the mightiest weapon – PRAYER so let’s continue to pray. God will never forsake us. Many help have reached our town already, especially GMA NewsTV, TV Patrol and Rescue5. Facebook is a great help. People were advised of the evacuation sites, relief distribution schedule, detours, and hotlines. Aside from the town officials, non-government organizations extended their kindest help.
Together we can surpass this. Hand in hand.
It’s also heartwarming to know that two commercial airlines, Philippine Airline and Cebu Pacific, have offered to bring medical equipment and relief goods for free to Bohol and Cebu. Smart Communications put booths and offered free call.
We are thankful for it was a national holiday due to Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha. Offices and schools were closed, malls and churches were not so occupied because families were intact at homes and so stampede incidents were avoided and many lives were spared. That’s the reward of respecting other religions too.
People are never heartless.
*** Photos were taken from the net. No copyright infringement intended. This is only to inform family and friends all over the world. ***
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