Some face masks have been pulled to the chin. Fevers have become an afterthought. Hand-washing? A luxury when barely a drop of water makes it to the tip of the faucet spout.
While it is only a matter of time until locals come back to their senses that there is an ongoing war against Covid-19, everyone is fighting the battle against the aftermath of typhoon Odette (international name: Rai)—just to survive.
Right now, the throngs have moved from pharmacies to ATMs, groceries and gasoline stations.
Here are a few essentials Cebuanos need as soon as possible, to be able to get back on their feet and themselves help people from neighboring towns and islands.
Fuel. With reports stating that getting electricity up and running is still going to take a month, hundreds of Cebuanos are now securing for their households a generator. This takes gasoline to run. Also, supply runs in the city and nearby towns need vehicles—which take gasoline to run. Hotels and other important establishments also need thousands of liters of gasoline to be able to power up their generators.
Drinking water. The scramble for bottled water was short-lived as stocks of drinking water flew off the shelves of convenience stores and groceries two days after the typhoon hit the metropolis. If there is any good news, some malls have had the initiative to limit purchases per customer, so as to avoid hoarding or worse, scalping. Drinking water is the number one need right now.
Electricity. Fact: A lot of things rely on electricity. Even the pumps that supply households with water require electricity. Mobile devices for communication, documentation purposes need electricity for charging. A quick drive through the city will show that even a few cement electrical posts have fallen to the ground. The quicker the fix, the quicker things get back to the way they were.
Cash. Most transactions have become cash-based. As electronics and internet connectivity have been down, purchases have had to be done with cash. The problem however is that banks have been closed and ATMs can only give out so much cash daily to the hundreds and hundreds of people in line for a cash withdrawal.
Internet connection. Work, news and updates rely on the internet. Bank transfers and the like rely on the internet. Because of the pandemic, many people who have found their livelihoods working from home now have their incomes threatened. Currently, phone and data signals are bare bones. As soon as high internet speeds resume, the sooner the economy can rebound.