Valderrama: What flooding tells us

Maria Gemima C. Valderrama
Maria Gemima C. Valderrama

The past days were not as good as the average days in Davao Region. The trough of the low-pressure area brought heavy rains, and the rivers weren't spared from flooding.

There was a significant impact on the provinces of Davao del Norte, Davao de Oro, and Davao Oriental. Massive flooding and landslides resulted in the displacement of thousands of households and the deaths of many.

Davao City was not spared, too, and the continuous rain for three days spawned a flood in the Davao River.

The only thing the residents near the river could hope for was that it would stay quiet throughout the prolonged, intense downpour.

The Davao River, the largest of Davao City's nine river basins, has the potential to disrupt numerous communities when it overflows severely. 

Prominent areas for flooding are Jade Valley Subdivision, Bucana and the other places near Bankerohan, Don Julian Subdivision and other villages in Ma-a.

People would suggest buying another house, but the idea is only suitable for people who can afford it immediately. Some would advise transferring to another area far from the Davao River, but it would mean being away from the city.

We belonged to the other villages, and we were not spared.

Last week's flooding wasn't the first time. The most critical flood experience and the last we had was the night before the NCCC Mall in Ma-a was burned into ashes in December 2017.

The water reached more than chest level, as seen in the traces of water, and there was forced evacuation. We had to spend over a week cleaning and fixing the house and spend Christmas in an available hotel. But amidst the grueling and distressing situation, the love of family and true friends alleviated the whole thing.

This is the only comforting part when you are a victim of flooding. You know you still have a house to return to, although some appliances and furniture were damaged, and you receive help and support.

In times like this, we get to know the people who genuinely care. They constantly ask about your situation and find ways to help. They don't only ask to get some news, but they reach out in ways they can.

Then you notice that some people will message you out of the blue to check on you. You realize, too, that the people close to you do not bother at all.

If they are away, they would get in touch and ask how things are and how they could help. If they are near, they will visit you and give you what you need, like food and water or cleaning materials.

They welcome you at their home or give you what you need. Or treat you out for a meal because they see how tired you are scrubbing off the mud from the tiles or looking for ways to save the clothes.

So, how does it feel to get flooded?

It's at this point that you become increasingly appreciative of God for keeping your family together, you realize who would support your family, and you realize what really matters.

Flooding reminds us once more of what is most important.


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