It’s now a week after the devastating 7.2 Magnitude earthquake in my hometown, Bohol.
I got a message from my sister, Angeline, that she posted pictures on Facebook with caption:
“abi ko ug salida ra ni pero diri man jd nahitabo sa Bohol, daghan pang mga balay o lugar nga wa nq ma-picture-an kay naghuot na akong dughan..
pasalamat na lang ta kay gibuhi pa ta.
pag-ampo ug pagtinabangay ang atong dapat buhaton karon…
May God bless us all!”
— Translation: —
“I thought it only happens in movies but it’s not. It’s really happening here in our town, Bohol. There were more houses and places that I didn’t take pictures because my heart is already aching. We just thank God we’re still saved and we live on.
We should help each other and continue to pray…
May God bless us all!”
Though I know I don’t want to see them, I should to check their current situation.
During and after the earthquake, residents chose to stay outside the house. They gathered at the open field basketball court, took shifts on sleeping and watching other neighbors so when an aftershock occurs, there will be someone alert to wake them up. Good Lord, it didn’t rain too.
Electricity was out. But another blessing in disguise happened. My father was accepting jobs in fixing machines and vehicles. He has one generator fixed and was not yet claimed by the customer. And so he used it to help others. People from the neighborhood and nearby barangays came to charge their phones in order to keep in touch with their loved ones.
My mother said that while people were busy charging their phones, they were also vigilant with the aftershocks. When a strong aftershock occurs, they grabbed the phones not knowing if it’s theirs and ran after one another cramming to go outside the house and some jumped over the our terrace’s balusters. Then outside, they just call out and exchange phones to the right owners. Funny but sad.
My family is also a victim but still they managed to extend their help to our relatives who were greatly affected. My siblings and I sent money for their consumptions and they also shared it to them. They tried to divide what’s available, for the malls were closed and there was a shortage in supplies too.
My parents, youngest sister, and adopted went house to house to Catigbian, Bohol to visit our relatives. They trailed along the cracked roads. What welcomes them there are heartbreaking scenes. I don’t want to post here again the destructed homes and the families in the mishap. But I would like to share here the pictures of my grandfathers who stayed strong and never left their homes. No major damage because their house are made of wood only – the traditional payag.
The pictures below were taken at my grandfather’s house (mother’s side) where they dried the newly harvested rice grains from my grandfather’s fields. They took turns in pounding them to make it ready for cooking and gave to his children and grandchildren living near the area. Our old folks are very strong for there were far more tragedies and calamities worse than this that they had experience. That’s where my parents got the traits too.
Spirit of bayanihan, prayer weapon and the close family ties of Filipinos (especially Boholanos) make it not impossible to rise again from this disaster.
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