Espina: Pinoys and calamities

·2 min read

WE will all remember 2020 and 2021 as the years when we had to cope with mega crises threatened by the Covid pandemic and, lately, the cyclonic typhoon Odette which took lives and properties.

There were previous calamities in the past but these two were the deadliest; almost unbearable.

How sad that while calamities are supposed to bring citizens together, the ambivalent values of Pinoys tend to divide us.

I was listening to radio broadcaster Bobby Nalzaro as he bewailed how some traders took advantage of hoarding some basic essentials, then sold them at an exorbitant amount. This is not new to me. My household helpers told me how their neighbors stole their roofs, clothes and essentials at the height of the storm.

But on the other hand, one owner of a construction company offered our maid free transportation, a few house materials and food on their way to Bogo, Cebu. Another contributed food and clothes. These are the shining heroes we badly need today.

My alumni across the globe texted to check on my safety. My friends and relatives prayed for our welfare. True, prayers are the best weapons. I was hoping to see or hear from our politicians at the height of the storm.

The test of leadership was at stake. How each government unit acted promptly with concrete action programs was demonstrated on how quick the rehabilitation of damaged areas was done. I might have missed some, but I saw how the mayor of Lapu-Lapu City dealt with hoarders of basic needs. Cebu Gov. Gwen Garcia was quick to conduct action meetings with the town mayors and barangay leaders, so with Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama. But what we would like to see are the quick response of some bureau heads in fixing wires, cleaning streets with garbage, fallen trees and debris. And what about Globe, Visayan Electric Co., PLDT etc.?

“In My Diary” has some photos to demonstrate how Pinoys coped with countless calamities. Indeed, there were priceless testimonies of our teachers, business and civic leaders, barangay officials and government leaders.

Members of the reliable tri-media, like SunStar Cebu, The Freeman, GMA 7, dySS etc., as well as social networks, gave updated news, forecasts, among many information details.

Every calamity is always a test of our values, attitudes and fortitude. The “bayanihan” spirit is intact and works positively.

It was a gloomy, blue Christmas. But, maybe, these phenomena are ultimately driving home a message. Man. Nature. The Lord of Creation. It is time the world spends some moments of reflections.

Let’s look forward to 2022!

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