How some Cebuanos abroad are coping with the coronavirus crisis

By: Immae Lachica - General Assignments Reporter/CDN Digital | March 30,2020 - 02:31 PM

Two Cebuanos and their families in the US give their take on the coronavirus pandemic.

CEBU CITY, Philippines— While everyone is in the comforts of their home with their families here in Cebu there are some who are far from the Queen City of the South.

These Cebuanos are those working and living abroad.

Can you imagine how they are handling this crisis? Having to think about their personal safety far from home and having to think about the families they have to leave behind?

CDN Digital got a chance to ask two Cebuanos, who are now working and living in the United States, about how they were dealing and battling this COVID-19 crisis.

Frontliner from LA

Let’s start off with a very young Cebuano frontliner working as a licensed vocational nurse in Torrance, Los Angeles.

Anna Liza Amancio, 23, who hails from Dalaguete Cebu told CDN Digital that for almost four years working as a nurse in another country, this is by far the most stressful and scariest situation she has encountered.

“Currently the US has the most number of cases of COVID-19 compared to the other countries. As a nurse, you have to put on brave, happy faces when taking care of your patients, but every time I come home from work I find myself with tears flowing down my face and with a heavy heart. I’m definitely SCARED!,” she said.

Although Amancio is living with her mother who is also a nurse in the States, she could not help but think how different the story is now compared to the previous years.

“I used to go to work with calmness and nothing to worry after duty but now, it’s a whole new story! Now, I feel like I’m fighting a battle that we don’t know who the enemy is every time I go to work. Same goes to other nurses, I suppose,” she added.

She says that being away from her hometown here in Cebu has its advantages and disadvantages.

Amancio is relieved to know that her family is intact back home and is in good condition, but heartbroken because as a nurse, she could not extend her help to her fellow Filipinos suffering from the virus.

Math teacher in Arizona

From a young frontliner, let’s head to a family in Arizona, USA.

Niel Wilfred Pableo, 31, a math teacher in Arizona who hails from Cebu, said that with the 19 deaths in their place, it would not hurt to be extra cautious.

Pableo, lives with his family, Meriam, 32, his wife who is working as a certified nursing assistant, and his two sons, Arkin, 7, and Axiel, 4.

He told CDN Digital that they were not under community quarantine yet, but were mandated to practice social distancing.

He pointed out that staying at home would not be a problem for most of them but the act of panic buying would.

“To be honest, it’s not that hard kay makagawas pa man mi dili pa kaayo strict ba dri sa Arizona unlike sa East Coast siguro. Pero the only thing that’s frustrating — ang panic buying sa mga taw like literal na mahutdan ka ug bathroom tissues ug bugas,” he said.

(To be honest, it’s not that hard here for us since we can still go out here in Arizona, unlike in the East Coast. But the only thing that is frustrating is the panic buying of the people, literally, we are running out of bathroom tissues and rice.)

Even when they have already started with doing their classes online, Pableo still finds it alarming knowing that his wife is one of the many frontliners battling this crisis.

“Though, karon iyang line of work is to monitor sa mga elderly people. Like isolated ilang lugar so mas layo sa disgrasya sa corona, but still you don’t what will happen mao salig lang jud ta ni Snr. Sto. Niño. Siya atong manlalaban!,” he added.

(Though, now her line of work is just to monitor the elderly in an isolated area s0 she has very minimal chances of being infected with the coronavirus. But still you don’t know what will happen. That is why we put all our turst to the Señor Santo Niño. He is our best protector.)

Living away from home for almost three years now, Pableo can only wish and pray for all this to be over.

Amancio and Pableo are just some of the few Cebuanos who are battling this crisis away from home.

Luckily for these two, they have their family members with them. /dbs

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TAGS: abroad, Amancio, Arizona, Cebuanos, Dalaguete, Los Angeles, Pableo
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