Mindanao Mission – Day 2: Off to the east!

Coming from our stressful day yesterday, it was a relief to finally lie down and sleep in a comfortable bed. We had to wake up everyday around 6:00 AM because we should follow our itinerary as much as we can. We went straight to our field office in Trento, Agusan del Sur to conduct to interviews with our colleague, to get a sense of what they exactly do in the field. We then drove for approximately three hours to visit a barangay in Cateel, Davao Oriental. The coastal areas of Davao Oriental, particularly Boston, Baganga and Cateel were severely devastated by Typhoon Pablo (international name: Bopha) in December 2012. These towns were affected most especially by storm surges brought about by strong winds, enough to destroy some infrastructure and houses in their respective communities. As you can see from the photos below, the people of Barangay Maglahus in Cateel, Davao Oriental had to cross the river using a boat. There used to be a hanging bridge connecting the two areas, but it was sadly destroyed during the typhoon. We were lucky to be there when there was no rain, because apparently, it has been raining for about a week before we got there. Can you just imagine how strong the water current could get and how perilous it would be for the people and children to cross the river? The lengths these kids go just to attend school Crossing the river to reach Barangay Maglahus in Cateel

Marianne all thumbs up!

Continue Reading

Mindanao Mission – Day 1: Hello Mindanao!

My colleagues and I were supposed to meet at exactly 1:00 AM in NAIA Terminal 3. I had to drop by the apartment in Makati to pack my things, but as I had to do chores before doing so, Mon and I found ourselves in Pasay, then to Glorietta, and back to Pasay just to pick up my office laptop. I did my best to pack only the essentials, but as we will be moving from one place to another within a day, I had to bring as many shirts as possible. I also decided to finally buy a new luggage from SM for about Php 1,700 and hopefully it will hold up well.This shot of arrival in NAIA Terminal 3 looks verrrrrrrrrrrrrrry familiar

Sunrise viewed from the plane

Continue Reading

Heavy downpour trauma

Whenever the rain falls down so hard, I can’t help but feel a little nervous. Since the 2009 Typhoon Ondoy, which struck our area and family so hard, we became eternally paranoid of a heavy downpour. My family were safe, albeit shaken from the experience but sometimes, I still look back at some of the things that were destroyed by the calamity. I know this might sound frivolous to some but I mostly hoped that I could have just given out some of these before the tragedy struck. Then they could have survived.

I had acquired this Hermès La Promenade de Longchamps scarf, which I only used once in 2009, in that photo below:

Hermès La Promenade de Longchamps scarf - Manila, Philippines

Details of my (already unfortunate) Hermès La Promenade de Longchamps scarf

Continue Reading