9 days after Yolanda ravaged several provinces in the Philippines, I still find myself crying while watching the news. It’s been 10 days of heartbreak.
The whole world knows how Philippine provinces, particularly Samar and Leyte, have been left with extreme devastation. There have been a lot of local and foreign aid now and slowly, the victims of Yolanda are starting to pick themselves up and dust themselves off to rebuild their lives.
Tacloban City and Palo in Leyte and Basey in Samar are among the places that have been severely affected. These are places we went to last year and it’s hard to imagine that they are now in shambles.
It was a quick weekend trip, a particularly memorable one because I felt sick after and thought I was only tired from the trip but later learned it was due to anemia.
We explored Tacloban City by foot and only rode the jeepney when we were headed to the coliseum, airport and the neighboring towns of Palo and Basey. I met an old man working at the park where the MacArthur’s Memorial Landing stands and I was able to have a chat with him. We met a couple of kids in Basey who accompanied us while we were stranded at the church. They sang and danced to entertain us while we were waiting for the rain to stop.
Tacloban had a lot of trees. The UP Tacloban campus was a bird sanctuary and had a butterfly garden. It’s sad that all those trees are gone. Gone within 5 hours.
I wonder how the Basey Church look like now. I hope the kids and the old man survived.
These places are in shambles now but I want to remember them as how they were before Yolanda…and how they will be in the future… maybe and I hope, better than how they were.