Sunday, September 27, 2009

ONDOY: What Happens Now?

We were all caught by surprise on that fateful Saturday afternoon. Some of us went to work, while others stayed in bed longer - after all, it's a weekend. Some, however, were already cautious of the nonstop rain that might cause flooding, especially in low lying areas. But, what transpired on midday was beyond our imagination, almost a hyper-reality. It was something that most of us could only see in a Hollywood film, but this time, it was real... and it was here.


A view from my bedroom window. I didn't expect this at all!

We are still in a state of shock, of disbelief. Television images and personal videos and photos posted online are more than enough to stimulate pity, grief, and on the brighter side, heroism among us. We are in the mood of extending our hands, of volunteering to help others. And when the waters finally subside, most of us might just go on with our lives...

This should not happen for there are surely people who are accountable for this tragedy.

Why weren't we informed that this tropical storm carries with it massive amounts of rain? Why were the people who live near the rivers not informed about the releasing of waters from the nearby dams? Why is Marikina City so ill-equipped with this disaster knowing that it is so prone with this kind of flooding? Have they forgotten the great flood which recently happened that swept off most of the "tiangges" or the Christmas bazaar at the riverbanks? I remember it vividly!

Each of us may have our own questions why this happened. We have to demand answers. Perhaps, in next year's elections, we must not forget to ask the candidates about their platforms for the environment (others are suggesting that we must also take Population Control seriously as well). This has been ignored most of the time, but we must really, really take this seriously now.

Well, elections are still several months away. In the meantime, we must act on our own to help Mother Nature and in a way, prevent this massive destruction to ever happen again:

Maybe supermarkets should start imposing a "Plastic Bags For Sale" (on a hefty price) so that everyone will be compelled to bring their own recyclable bags when doing groceries.

Every school should have a Tree Planting field trips instead of going to the Mall of Asia.

Cars with only one person (the driver) should not be allowed to travel - at least on major routes.

Offices should only buy and use recycled papers.

Fastfood chains should stop using styros for take-out orders. If they can't, don't eat or order there at all. Stop patronizing these establishments which continue to pollute our environment. They even make us FAT!!! Eat fruits, instead!

Don't live near a river. That's elementary Geography. Rivers swell ... it's a fact of nature. Otherwise, take the risk.

Our nature is now slowly taking charge of her territory. Sooner or later, another disaster will happen. The same problems will occur, the same questions will be left unanswered. That's the cycle of our fate. Clearly, and maybe, unfortunately ... WE ARE NOT THE MASTERS OF THE UNI

Friday, September 25, 2009


Manila never fails to amaze me. I know it still has a lot of places to discover and explore.

It was only recently that I got the chance to re-visit the Museum of the Filipino People and the National Museum. I thought they were still dark and gloomy inside, with that distinct smell of history permeating permanently in your nose, in your clothes, in your body. But I was wrong.

Happily, these museums have been renovated and "modernized". The lighting system have been upgraded, as well as the airconditioning. They are also well-maintained by the staff, who make sure that cleanliness is impeccable and systems are in place.

who needs an elevator if you have this
beautiful staircase?

Visiting these museums are no doubt a great alternative from the usual hangout places we normally go to. It gives us a sense of appreciation for our culture and history. Take time to read the captions, and try to do more research when you get home to truly appreciate and understand what the artifacts, the artworks are all about.

According to John Silva, the museum's Senior Consultant, Jose Rizal became a renaissance man that he has become because of his regular visits in the world's biggest museums and libraries in Europe. There, he learned a lot of things that sparked more yearning for learning and of course, critical thinking.

The main attraction - The Spoliarium (Juan Luna)

I know this won't be the last of my visits in our country's museums. I am now eyeing to visit the Ayala Museum, the Metropolitan in BSP, etc. this coming days. Seeing the works of great people and our ancestors stimulates my mind... my curiosity, and most of all, aggrandize my sense and concept of beauty.

as John Silva puts it, this is an oasis in the city