Briones: Holding on to summer

Publio J. Briones III

WELL, just hold your horses.

I know it has been raining cats and dogs—okay, maybe I exaggerate, but after a three-month dry spell it does seem that way—but, our weather bureau Pagasa said we’d just have to wait another week before it could declare summer was over.

Or not.

You see, weather prediction is not an exact science. The fact that the acronym for our weather bureau means “hope” in English says it all. However, there have been remarkable advances in the past 20 years or so. New technology has even enabled forecasters to track storms in real time. I guess, it’s safer to say that although forecasting is not exactly exact, it has pretty well come close.

It’s an approximation.

Pagasa said that a low pressure area has been spotted off the coast of Eastern Samar and is expected to enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility next week. That is why parts of Metro Cebu can expect to experience scattered rains and thunderstorms with occasional downpours in the next two days.

So why am I talking about the weather all of a sudden? Well, why not?

I never had the chance to gripe about soaring temperatures in the last three months because I was too busy wondering when life would finally return to normal.

The government restricted our movements when the first local transmission of the highly contagious but not so deadly coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) was detected in the first week of March.

On March 28, Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella placed the city on a month-long enhanced community quarantine to try to contain the spread of the disease. But that one month turned to more than two months after the quarantine was extended twice.

Since then, the pandemic has been the subject of almost everyone’s conversation.

I have to admit I was anxious in the beginning.

Health authorities, here and abroad, were painting worst-case scenarios. I read stories of homes for the aged in Spain and Italy being abandoned by their staff because all their occupants had succumbed to the disease.

You know. Stuff like that.

Thankfully, that never happened here and hopefully never will. I always believed that our scorchingly hot weather was a major factor. Don’t ask me to explain because I can’t. I’m not an expert. Let’s just say I have a gut feeling about this.

So if you’re wondering why I’m not too keen to say goodbye to summer just yet, there’s my answer.