So, yesterday was something.
Storm Signal Number 3 and Manila took a direct hit. It's the first time a work day was called off due to a storm. I was kind of bummed as the OSS Team was supposed to have a team building activity. But of course, Mother Nature had other plans.
When I got the message that there would be no work I thought 'Well, I can catch up on those DVDs.' Little did I know I would be catching up on my reading instead.
I was sitting by the window watching the storm outside. Trees were flailing all around. It was kinda like watching a mosh pit in one of the Ozzfest concerts; a lot of head banging and slamming action going on. Right, drunk and rebellious trees. That explains why they were splayed all over the streets of Manila the next morning. Apparently some billboards got into the action :P
When the winds calmed down a little, emphasis on little, I went out to make sure our car was not under a tree or if it was still in the parking lot at all. When I got outside everything was covered in leaves. There were also few branches poking out of the pile here and there. In the backyard several trees were uprooted. Including a large one. Fortunately, it didn't fall on anyone's house.
I have a newfound respect for LBC Delivery. Around noon, when the winds were at its strongest, we heard someone calling out at the front door; the doorbell wasn't working as the power was now out. It turned out to be an LBC Delivery guy. And guess what? He was on a motorcycle. How about that? Take that Fedex! UPS? Who's that? Maybe they should change their name to -> LBC Extreme Delivery: "We'll deliver or die trying!". Hey, I should copyright that.
Of course, after receiving that delivery, Milenyo was not about to be outdone. It made a delivery of its own: a piece of corrugated plastic roofing delivered with attitude right at our doorstep, literally. That's Milenyo saying 'I can do better than that! And oh yeah, I can bring down your house too.’ Who's the man?!'
One of our neighbors in Paranaque called to say that the wind blew our garage doors open. It was thrashing around and making a lot of noise in the process. They had gone and tied it down. So we had to go out and drive right after the storm around 3 or 4pm from Diliman to Bicutan. Almost all the trees planted in the road's "island" were uprooted. Ads that were not taken down from their billboards were ripped, and pieces of it were scattered on the road. Light post were down and some were leaning precariously on electrical cables over the road and passing cars. A lot of MMDA people was already on the road by then, chopping up trees blocking the roads and removing debris. Side streets were cleared by people living in the shantys beside it. Of course, they were now asking money from drivers trying to use those same streets.
So we got to our house. There was some damage but they were minor. The garden was a mess though. We locked up and started heading back. Driving back in the dark was dangerous. All the streetlights were out. I don't remember passing a place where they had electricty. The whole of Manila was now drowned in darkness. Listening to the radio, reports of stranded, missing, and dead people were coming in. Houses were blown away by the wind, destroyed by mudslides, and washed away by overflowing rivers.
What a grim reminder how fragile things we are.