Friday, January 28, 2011

Every Step Near Home is a Blessing

On the 26th day of January-2011, I dared to challenge the greatest flood Jeddah has ever faced and I am sad to say that I was defeated. The experience was really something and I can say memorable for me because it is the very first time I've really charged a fierce flood. From Obhor, me and my colleague (a Sudanese) were able to conquer few great floods we passed along the way. Our journey ended in Madinah road just right before Falasteen road.

While I was walking last night at Mushrefah's suburbs, I found a few Pinoys walking in group and a few lone ones like me. I kept thinking "How am I going to go home for my kid?"  Getting near Falasteen, the flood kept getting deeper and deeper - no, the video is not the place where I walked, the video is not mine and I just took it from the internet. I saw some people going back after trying to beat the waves but decided to surrender. They were warning people that the water is chest deep and that the waves are quite strong just like the video above.  I really want to go home but I felt a great fear for my life if I continue my journey (don't want to be famous because of my stupidity and die because of it, lol!). That is when I decided to surrender as well - for the time being. I decided to go back to Madinah road and grab a bite before I try again. It is dark already and the current is getting stronger. I saw some lightning flashes around north which made me a bit troubled. I prayed the whole time while I was walking but it felt better when I heard a fellow-Pinoy saying "Kabayan? Ingat kabayan ah!". I thanked him and decided to do the same to other Pinoys I met. Sometimes, in a moment when you least expect it, strangers may sometimes give you encouragement with just a simple greeting.

Grabbing a bite isn't easy as well. Al-Baik is jump-packed full of stranded people and from the looks of it, Al-Baik is the only one having the benefit from the current situation. After eating I decided to check if the flood is already dissipating but when I checked it, it is still the same so I decided to surrender and went to our church. It's a great thing Kuya Lito and Ptr. Henry was there. I prayed that no rain would come while other stranded people like me try to take a rest and gather more strength for journey home the next day.

Morning came and our pastor and I went and fetch Leah so we could try and go home. Before that I checked ArabNews Online and check about the current situation but due to some restrictions in news and media, I was only able to find pictures from yesterday. I was expecting something like our very own online news where people is informed of the current situation from traffics, pictures and video clips but was only disappointed.

Our journey always end up at Falasteen road where hundreds (probably more) of abandoned car were dumped by nature, just check out the video and try to imagine how the cars were dumped (eg. car over another car, upside down cars, etc...). Our last resort was Siteen since it is the only bridge and the only high place connecting Sharafiyah and Mushreffah (North to South). We live around Baghdadeyah opposite of Ruwais but the level is much lower than Madinah and Siteen so we decided not to go there - the place could still be flooded.

When we arrive our target location, we're relieved to know that we made the right choice but it seems the only way we could get through Falasteen is by foot because of the number of abandoned vehicles and the number of vehicles trying to get pass Falasteen. My wife and I decided to just walk our way home because we don't know what lies ahead and we re afraid that Ptr. Henry would be stranded as well. So we thanked him and went our way by foot.

It is a great thing that I've decided to delay my journey home because if not my wife would probably be walking alone or would have to stay with friends for another day. You can find images from our journey home at Baul's Diary (Sqwander!). Update: Here is a slideshow of our journey home.

All I can say is that every step we made and every step near home is a blessing.  We are so tired but relieved when we saw our place. I felt renewed strength as we go up the stairs. Ize missed us so much, he kept on hugging and kissing us the whole time - he was so worried. I recall him being awake when I called his yaya around 6am that morning (he usually wakes up around 10am during weekends or when there are no classes). Thank you Lord for our safe journey home.

I would like to add a few prayers for all the people who bravely help others instead of thinking about themselves. This is just one of the scenes here in Jeddah. Just watch closely at the people trying to help the troubled people inside the vehicle that was caught in a wild flood wave. Truly, tragedies give birth to brave heroes when a nation faces a great tragedy. Salute to all of them and hope they miraculously survived.


Bhing said...


i love the title post, speaks a million.

im glad everyone is safe.

the weather is gone mad everywhere. maybe this is the result of unending abused for our mother earth.

let's do our part to save our planet :)

Kamila said...

Ngayon lang po ako napadaan dito kuya noel... waaaahh thank God okay na at nakauwi na kayo. Happy ako sa mga salita mo.. tungkol sa every step niyo pauwi ay blessing.... na ang positive. At nasa ibang bansa kayo? Waaah magkakasama kayo buong family..that's nice to hear! :)

Noel said...

@Bhing - true kasi yung title sa situation namin. At talaga namang nakakatakot kasi last year nabalitaan namin na pwedeng bumigay anytime yung dam kapag napuno nang tubig at ang nakakatakot pa ay untreated yung tubig nila sa dam kaya it may cause more havoc - illnesses at stench. sobra!

Kamila - salamat sa pagdaan, mabuti at di mo nadaan along the way ang baha hehehe! Oo nasa ibang bansa kami at magkakasami kaming buong pamilya.

Bino said...

glad to hear na ligtas ka. God bless :)

NFB said...

Ano kaya nangyari dun sa nag-attempt na tumulong? Nakakatakot panoorin ang video. u wouldnt think it's happening in the desert. What an experience for you Noel. We have every reason indeed to thank God for His protection on us that sometimes we don't get to realize it.

iya_khin said...

hello po,sinadyan pumarito!
naku buti nalang safe kayo! God bless po

chino a.k.a chinchan said...

hi kuya noel, very inspiring . nakakapangilabot ang video =)

Noel said...

Bino - thanks, buti na lang hehe! I thank God for that hehe!

NFB - oo nga, naisip ko rin yun. Kahit na di natin sila kalahi siyempre we feel pity for them dahil kahit tayo ay naranasan natin yung mga ganitong trahedya. Indeed God is always our great protector.

iya_khin mabuti at napagawi ka ulit dito sa aking Baul. Salamat.

chinchan salamat sa iyong pag-bisita. Talagang nakakapangilabot. Siguro lalo kung nandoon ako.

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