I have friends and relatives who, until now, still don’t have internet connection. And my heart goes out to them. Really.
I know what it’s like not to be “connected.”
Heck, I was also off the grid, so to speak, for exactly four weeks after Super Typhoon Odette struck Cebu Island on the night of Dec. 16, 2021.
During this period, my neighborhood didn’t have power. So we also didn’t have any internet.
Be that as it may, I refrained from writing about both situations because I knew linemen from both the electric utilities and telecommunications companies (telcos) were hard at work and continue to work tirelessly to restore what was lost during one of the strongest storms to hit Cebu since Yolanda.
I know they’ve been under pressure.
There has been public clamor for them to deliver. There have even been allegations of money changing hands, which is actually unfair to those who have just been doing their jobs.
And even if the allegations are true, why place the blame entirely on the linemen who asked payment from households and establishment owners for power reconnection?
I’m pretty sure some of these households and establishment owners had offered to pay so they could get ahead of line, which, under the circumstances, would have been very tempting.
At any rate, I have yet to hear complaints of telco linemen doing the same. Asking and accepting payment, I mean.
I understand why people are anxious to have their internet back. Some need it to work. Some need it to go to school. And then there are some who can’t imagine life without TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, or whatnot.
I have to admit I’m addicted to Facebook.
The very first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is to open my account and check for messages and notifications.
I still don’t know how I managed to survive those four weeks without power and the internet. Of course, it helped that I had access to both at work. So I wasn’t entirely deprived.
Still, it was nice to know that I could survive even without the stuff that we all take for granted. And I’m not just talking about myself. Thousands of families found themselves in a similar predicament and they, too, coped.
Because at the end of the day we know there are far more important things out there.
So to those who continue to do without, hang in there a little longer. It will only be a matter of time.
January 29, 2022
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