The Day the Earth Did Not Stand Still.

Oct 16, 2013 by

It was around 8:15 AM. I was on my computer chatting with a prospect sponsor for an event I’m organizing when suddenly I felt dizzy. I looked around the room and I saw the glass half-filled with water creating weird ripples like the one in Jurassic Park movie. I froze. The shaking started a bit lazy and I was hoping it was going to stop quickly. But it got stronger. Then the electricity went out. I stood up and reached for the door. I heard a crashing sound coming form the shelf and saw the porcelain nativity falling off. I went out of the room. I could hear people from the road screaming. The house produced a creaking sound like a massive boulder being dragged by an invisible force. The shaking continued and it got even stronger. I was frozen, trying to think whether the shaking would get worse. I saw the coconut trees wobbling like limp lifeless plants. The hanging things in the house were all moving about, in hysteria, a scene straight out of a movie. After about a minute, the shaking weakened. People were out on the street in odd clothing, hugging themselves as if it was the safest thing to do. I heaved a sigh when I realized the shaking has come to a temporary halt. The pond in the garden as seen from the window was spilling over on both sides, like a basin held off-balance. My next thought was: will there be strong aftershocks? No one knows. As far as that moment was concerned, we were all safe. Thank God. I was trying to catch my breath and spoke to the household. Everyone uttered the same thing: “Grabe. Kululbaan.”

Aftershocks went on until late afternoon. News broke like wildfire both on traditional and social media platforms. Real-time updates about the hard-hit Bohol & Cebu Provinces shocked the country and the world. There was massive destruction in infrastructures while casualties rose to more than a hundred. The most painful aftermath of the earthquake is the irreparable destruction of several heritage sites in Bohol and Cebu. I assume you have all seen the photos and footages by this time. Netizens have poured out their grief towards the collapsed structures as if several friends have died. It is inevitable, especially for Filipinos like us who regard churches not only for its historical value but because of the role it plays in our dominantly Catholic formation and consciousness. The damage is irreparable. And just like the past natural calamities, it spares nothing and no one. This is the way the world is. It behaves the way it knows how and we are powerless in going against it.

I have posted on my facebook page:

“I really hope the authorities won’t re-create the structures destroyed by the earthquake. As in other ruins everywhere in the world, what remains, remains. And that’s it. If they wish to continue using the edifice, they can probably design an interior protection that will not tamper with the original materials composition of the structure. The destruction was an act of nature/God. Nothing could have stopped it from happening, but we can celebrate its past grandeur by allowing the future generations see the ruins as it is.”

We all know this won’t be the last time an earthquake will happen. We can only pray that the next time it comes it wouldn’t be worse. And yes, let’s not forget making sure our homes are strong enough to stand a shaking ground.

God bless everyone.

The Chocolate Hills collapsed due to the earthquake that hit Bohol. Photo courtesy of Robert Michael Poole via Twitter

The Chocolate Hills collapsed due to the earthquake that hit Bohol. Photo courtesy of Robert Michael Poole via Twitter

 PHOTO by @summerxlove24: Damaged Sto. Niño Church

PHOTO by @summerxlove24: Damaged Sto. Niño Church

Director Sid Maderazo posted this photo on Instagram and said: "Was biking when the earthquake hit Bohol. Baclayon church was heavily damaged."

Director Sid Maderazo posted this photo on Instagram and said: “Was biking when the earthquake hit Bohol. Baclayon church was heavily damaged.”

Front of Loboc Church after collapse. Photo courtesy of Robert Michael Poole

Front of Loboc Church after collapse. Photo courtesy of Robert Michael Poole

 

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>