October 16, 2013

The scene of the earthquake

It takes a strong earthquake to distract an excited blogger like me from writing a series of blog posts I have planned to do here. Distraction is putting it mildly, actually. When a 7.2 magnitude earthquake shook Carmen, Bohol yesterday and rippled to Cebu where my family and I live, we all became traumatized. We still are; stressed and highly tensed, too. According to people older than me, they exclaimed that it was the strongest quake they have ever experienced in their lifetime.


I could say the same, too. The earthquake I experienced several months ago while I was editing a material for the company website in the fifth floor of our building was almost nothing compared to the terror yesterday. Folks over Twitter said yesterday's quake lasted 14 seconds. It felt like it wouldn’t stop.

Then the telecommunications stopped working. Within the next hour, I felt my hypertension coming when I couldn’t reach my boyfriend after I sent him half dozen text messages. For some reason, the networks would not allow calls and our text messages were delayed. After a while, he alerted me that he and his family are okay, much to my relief.

Later on, much quickly, the relief was replaced with fear and grief.

Following the 7.2 earthquake, the aftershocks all through the night that already reached well over 800 are not helping dampen our fears. As of this writing, the tremors are getting milder. But in certain intervals, there are intense, much stronger, frightening jolts. We had a sleepless night and, with Phivolc’s recent announcement, it seems like we’re going to have a long sleepless week, perhaps even months.

View Cebu-Bohol Earthquake Map v.2 in a larger map

Apart from the fear of our safety, we weep over our fellow Cebuanos and Boholanos who were killed during the quake, those who are still missing, and the hundreds of families affected by the disruption of water services and access to food. We can help! Our fellows in Bohol need food, water, tents, and blankets. Among the drop-off centers in Cebu include:

  1. Destinations Specialist in Banilad Town Center
  2. ABS-CBN Broadcast Complex in Jagobiao, Mandaue City
  3. Gawad Kalinga Cebu, care of DOST Office in Banilad
  4. Hanz Coquilla Shop in Sepulveda Street, Cebu City
  5. In front of BDO-Fuente Osmeña area
  6. Ngenius IT Hub in Hernan Cortes, Mandaue City
  7. Public Information Office, Headquarters Central Command, Camp Lapu-Lapu, Cebu City
  8. University of Cebu-Banilad campus
  9. UP KadBol Cebu Chapter
At the same time, we weep over the destruction in part or in full of historic churches in Cebu and Bohol, including the bell tower of the much revered Basilica del Sto. Niño. Devotees, myself and my boyfriend included, already expressed how painful the sight of the fallen bell tower is; how much more for devotees and residents of Bohol who value their old churches very much.

I appreciate all the messages I received over Twitter, Facebook, and email, wishing me and my family safety and praying for our recovery. Now, let us redirect our efforts and well wishes to our fellows in Bohol; they need us more than ever.

- Nancy -