Tuesday, November 25, 2008

an earthquake story

I am still feeling a little dizzy after a mild earthquake few seconds ago. Cotabato is not unknown to tectonic shocks. We got pointers not to run down the stairs during a tremor, better to go upstairs instead. Of late I received a reminder from an internet source, not to hide under a table, bed or door jamb for they are collapsible structures that can pin you down. The email said it would be safer to duck beside some solid structures. I think that's true.
I myself experienced a big quake in Cotabato City on August 16, 1976 just few minutes past midnight. The harrowing experience was vivid because I was a victim of that earthquake. That fateful day, our house com store and residence LCT #1 collapsed carrying my eldest son Roy who was exactly 1 year, one month and one day old inside the rubbles. Infact there were several other persons inside that collapsed building. There were a 90 year old grandmother, my mother-in-law, Johnny- a young male relative, my son and his yaya and 4 househelps.( 9 people in all ) My room didn't collapse with the rest of the house though. When the big and long quakes finally stopped and my husband and I realized that half of the house went down, for a moment we thought that everybody died including my infant son. My husband Lucas could not see a thing with his contact lenses thrown away in a case and all darkness consumed the night. The only thing I could think and do was pray. I prayed the " Lord's Prayer " out loud, once,  twice and on and on while groping for a way out of the room and the building. The Almighty God was merciful though. He saw to it that nobody died that night. Johnny, the male relative somehow was able to climb up from the rubble together with the househelps. The main stairway was not destroyed enabling my husband and I to go down to the street. The street was empty and strewn with broken glasses. I cried for help. "Saklolo, saklolo, tulungan ninyo kami dito". Roy's yaya heard my call and responded. Thank God, Roy was safe in her arms. I begged Johnny to go in through the broken windows and get them out. Soon, all of them including my mother-in-law and the old grandmother were rescued by Johnny Tan. Everybody was saved including a maid who was pinned down by a building block. Yet a part of my youth died that year, after going through that devastation night and surviving 6 months of rebuilding back our normal lives.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Refrain

Tonight, I went through my past blogs and this song caught my attention and I just have to write about it again for I have almost forgotten its tune and lyrics......

God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we can not see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to his side
With love and care for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way




Monday, November 10, 2008

Nov. 10, 2008

Hi, I am 57 years old today and I am happy to have reached this milestone. I thank God for taking care of me. I wouldn't be anything without his love.
At 57, I maybe older but wiser?! hehehe. Uglier ?! ( of course with wrinkles and all ) but even though, I know in my heart that I am well respected and loved by my children, family members and close friends. Now adays, I cry more easily, laugh loudly and speak unsolicitously. I teach, I dance, I do taichi, I love to sing and I take care of my husband and he does me. I hope to see all my children successful in their careers and undertakings. I hope to see them all married to good spouses and bear healthy children. I plan to retire in the near future and hope to go around the world (hehehe) It is my dream to go to Lourdes, France among other places. But most specially I want to spend my daily life in peace and quiet without fear and anxiety for myself, my husband, my children, love ones and all.
This is my birthday wish, hope and prayer today. I love you all!!!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friends

Friends are important to me. They spice up my sometimes humdrum life. They oftentimes come and go, but good friends do keep in touch. I have old hometown classmates that I see whenever I am in Manila. We get together, keep up with gossips and talk about each others lives. It doesn't matter where or how we live, who is rich or poor or who is tall and beautiful than ugly; for we view each other as in the past. I don't see them ever growing old. To me, they seem to have remain perpetually young, thus I continue to remain forever young myself.( hehehe ) I thank God for these gifts of friends Imelda, Anita and Corazon who reside now in Manila and also Rita in Canada. I am happy that we continue to see each other, share old stories yet look forward to the future as in the old days. Our friendship has gone through the test of time and distance, and thank God, we have all remain constant.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Bonding with my sister Helen

Last semestral break, I went to Manila for a week's vacation. In Manila though, most of my children were busy with school and work. Those who had some free time tried to spend their days with me. But if they were busy, I really didn't like to bother them. Instead I spent more of my semestral vacation going out with my sister Helen. Together we went for:
1. massage and foot spa
2. snacks
3. Wednesday afternoon mass at Mt. Carmel
4. supper at Terriyaki Boy
5. Helen's haircut at Promanade
6. a nice movie entitled "City of Ember"
7. (next day) Pilgrimage to Sto. Domingo, also with sister-in-law Dianne and her circle group
8. lunch at peri-peri
9. Helen's birthday celebration on October 31 at brother Jun's place
10. All Saint's Day vigil and visitations at Manila Memorial
11. stroll at Rockwell Center
12. and a movie show at rockwell center

Come to think of it, the "Tuesday night Baclaran Church visitation" or "wednesday meeting" that we the siblings used to observe, all started from the two of us (Helen and I).
While she was still residing in Cotabato, Helen and I would go out every Wednesday for the intention of lighting candles and/ or a novena at the Cathedral. I would fetch her from her home, together we would go to VIP House to chat with sister Jeannette and then snacked. We met regularly on Wednesday for it was sister Helen's free day of the week. It started with the two of us and eventually Jeannette joined us. Later Jeannette insisted that we met regularly in Manila too since most of the siblings were there already.
This time, I said..."Let's continue with what we have started even if it remains the two of us who have time for one another." We had fun time bonding as sisters. Infact we always enjoy each other's company.