Saturday, September 30

shaken

Yesterday was an extraordinary experience for me. Extraordinary in quite a frightening way.

When typhoon Milenyo was hurling its fury in the metro, I was out on the streets, trying to get myself home.

I saw for myself how the wind tore into the trees and the billboards and the many ‘yero’ flying everywhere. I felt how the wind tore into me, pushing my 43-kilo body back and forth…I was running against the wind, against the rain and I couldn’t even use my umbrella because the wind was only gonna take it away. I experienced desperation to find a safe place where no breaking glasses would hit me. I experienced being stranded, waiting for hours for a ride home. I experienced walking through the flood. I actually experienced fearing for my dear life.

You might think I’m overreacting but I honestly thought to myself, what if I die? I’ll die miserably. My death would be part of the casualties of the storm and it would be on the national papers, and my parents would be devastated. Mahal would totally break down.

It sounds a bit dramatic but the possibility was close.

What was making me weak inside was the thought that I was alone going through all that. Mahal wasn’t by my side. He was at work and the worst part was that I disobeyed him. He insisted that it wasn’t safe to go outside, but I didn’t listen. While I was in one of the bus that I was in, I was fighting the longing to pour all my fears into tears. Why hadn’t I listen? Why do I always have to be stubborn?

I looked at other people, ocean of people on the streets all damp like me, all scared… Made me feel more alone.

I wanted to really cry. I was in the bus, all damp and shivering but I tried so hard to hold myself up and think of home. That I could be home in a matter of hours. I kept assuring myself I could do it. I was praying non-stop.

This happened around 12 noon. At about 2 pm, the storm died down. Around 5 pm, I was home. It was impossible to reach Mahal in the office, nor my family’s phone in Bicol, but at least I was home.

I was safe.

Mostly, I was thankful.

Yesterday was an extraordinary experience for me. Extraordinary in a way that I would never forget.

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