Ugh. You cannot believe how much of a bad word “Sendong” has been to any of us. No, it has not become a “household name” nor it will ever be because we might look okay but the family has a lot of adjustments in 2012 to make up for whatever was lost in 2011 when The-Calamity-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named came.
In January, my family decided to go back to the old house after the cleaning and sanitation. A huge chunk of the house had been gone and my sisters joked about talking back in echoes because of the hallowness. The house may look semi-empty and it might be a long time since the water may be full again the half-full glass – bad pun, I know – but we all moved on. Although from time to time there is always that nagging feeling that somehow if this didn’t happen, you wouldn’t be putting in effort twice as much.
The first week that my family moved back in to stay at the house prompted my dad to hire a security guard who will spend most of his time watching the house at night. It was during the third week that my parents decided to not keep the guard anymore and tried to manage on their own. It rained on the on the forthnight and everyone packed their stuff and went to my grandmother’s house. They spent the night over and woke up to rain that can probably fill three plastic buckets. It was hard to close your eyes and imagine not waking up next to overflowing water. I was not even there but I can just feel how traumatizing the entire thing could be.
The year 2012 is going to be hard and finances will have to be adjusted but then again, and again and again, the most important thing is that we are all together. When the boyfriend and I went to the city to celebrate New Year’s Eve, we weren’t surprised that no one was in a festive mood. Cliche but the Cagayan de Oro you know that houses all kinds of merriment on practically every corner on the street was dead. Purely dead. No one was setting up chairs outside their houses by the road and taking shots of alcohol. Aunt Inday’s lechonan hardly had any orders and most shops were closed (oh, well, except for one, Shanghai, God bless Warren’s soul for giving out bread to the shelters). It broke my heart to hear that a cousin said our gifts were under their Christmas tree that was washed away from murkiness.
Thank you so much, Lord. Just.. thank you.