From a perspective of a photographer, a local resident and a typhoon victim, I’d like to share my Typhoon Yolanda afterthoughts, sorry but I have to be blunt and straightforward with this, I can’t allow beautiful words to describe on what has been an ugly aftermath.
As the country tries to recover from the heavy losses brought about by the typhoon. I could just reflect and wonder if the typhoon has brought “change” in us? Real change. For the better…
Unfortunately I still have seen, heard and felt the same evils lurking around – corruption, greed, pride, selfishness, bribery, robbery, theft, crime and a handful of hatred, cruelty and indifference. Despite the tremendous help that came from several countries and charitable organizations, these same deadly sins in our country are the very root cause why there is a very slow and almost stagnant progress in the recovery and restoration of the typhoon affected areas. Even statistics lie. Sad to mention the death toll count is not spared, in my humble opinion and while heavily disputable, but sorry to say, I’m not convinced on the accuracy of the death toll count. The shortage of body bags alone already tells you another story. And if still in doubt? Try interviewing the local residents particularly in the heavily hit areas like San Jose, Anibong, Old Road Sagkahan and much more, and their stories will be enough I guess. After all these tragic sequence of events that happened to our country, are we still capable of hiding the truth and lean on to lies, deception and distrust? Oh my.
Ironic as it seems, shall it take other people from the outside world to help us the most? Some of them I’ve heard for the first time, amazing! They have my utmost admiration and appreciation for what they have done to us. They have not only given us a lot of help, but they gave us real hope.
While my views are general in scope, it is noteworthy to mention that there are many unsung heroes that deserves to be praised – who in one way or the other, have brought the spirit of selflessness and compassion to many. Without a hidden agenda, only with kind hearts. Salute!
Even with the sad reality besetting on us right in our very own backyard, we cannot let these negative energies ruin our resolve to restore our lives. There is still a lot of hope… and one of these fervent hopes is to see the values of unity, love, compassion and selflessness overwhelm our country. I think the typhoon was more than enough to bring real change in us. And this has been my prayer ever since. God bless our country.
“Saying a little prayer.” Sto. Niño Church, Tacloban City
The Tacloban City Astrodome.
The unwavering Filipino smile.
A boy in one of the makeshift tents.
Sunrise at the Red Beach. Pawing, Palo.
The Macarthur Park.
“Hello Kitty” Manlurip, San Jose, Tacloban City.
“Man and Shadow” Manlurip, San Jose, Tacloban City.
Statue of the Virgin Mary. Sto. Niño Church, Tacloban City.
“Don’t worry son, we shall rise again.”
Photographer’s note: Panasonic GH3, Panasonic 12-35mm 2.8, Panasonic 35-100mm 2.8