Of floods and heroes

By: Madrileña de la Cerna September 16,2018 - 12:07 AM


Evacuation was very short because early the next day they are back in their house again checking for any damage or loss.

Every year we experience more than 20 typhoons and each time it is always a struggle to convince people to evacuate even though they are in the danger zone of flooding and landslide.

I would understand why. I grew up in a place in Carcar often visited by floods called Luanluan located below the high hill where the church, colegio and municipio stand.

It is near the Carcar river which easily overflows though a dam has been built.

The floods were huge then that caused the disappearance of a few individuals including teachers being swept away when they tried to salvage some items in the house.

I was told that my grandfather used to swim back and forth to transport my elder sisters from our house to my grandparents’ colonial house which was just beside.

The constant floods and their intensity caused several families in Luanluan to relocate to a more elevated place in the town.

Those who stayed have learned to deal with the floods.

Everyone would know if the flood wass coming because of its roaring sound from the mountains, so everybody had time to put everything inside, cover them and pack and proceed to the neighbors who had two-storey houses.

There were no evacuation centers then, most of the school buildings were located in low lying areas near the route of the floods.

I remember the Carcar

Dispensary, the health center of the town provided shelter for evacuees and those stranded from the trip to and from the city.

The Dispensary has a wide swimming pool at the back with a covered second floor which provided enough shelter.

Why do people evacuate at the last minute? From my experience and observation, they want to check everything – every corner of the house, furniture, clothes, and other personal items of the family.

Evacuation was very short because early the next day they are back in their house again checking for any damage or loss.

For us kids, we would go to the river to catch the coconuts and bananas swept by the floods and feast over the latik and the boiled bananas.

Then the general cleaning would start.

I experienced cleaning up the ground floor of my grandparents’ house and harvested a pail full of multicolored big earthworms.
* * *
Last week I had a good break from my rest when Eileen Mangubat treated me, Fe Reyes and Sofia Logarta to a sumptuous lunch and watching “Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral.”

I never had any curiosity about Gregorio del Pilar except that he was young and he died in Tirad Pass.

The movie was beautifully made thanks to the artistry of Jerrold Tarog.

It shows the flawed character of Goyong until his redemption in the end at Tirad Pass.

His exposure to weak and bad leadership explains his flawed leadership.

Mabini’s role is made clear in the movie and he makes his presence as a force in the revolution.

The movie invites people to review Philippine history and to read more about Apolinario Mabini and the two generals Antonio Luna and Gregorio del Pilar.

On the local scene, why not make movies on Leon Kilat and Arcadio Maxilom who were also generals?

Both were part and recognized in the revolutionary movement.

Leon Kilat (Pantaleon Villegas in real life) was recognized and assigned by Andres Bonifacio to organize in Cebu while Arcadio Maxilom was recognized by Emilio Aguinaldo.

I remember in a forum on Leon Kilat, somebody commented that it is difficult to write and present a musical play on Leon Kilat because there is no love angle, there is nothing on the love live of Leon Kilat.

When I shared this with a theatrical friend, he said you can always invent the love story.

I hope that with the coming 500th anniversary of Magellan’s expedition, our local heroes would be properly enshrined in our history in whatever form it will take.

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TAGS: floods, heroes

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