Thursday, after Typhoon Basyiang swept through with its ultra strong winds. The electricity came back on around 2 am this morning, after being in the dark for about 24 hours. Just to have light again was wonderful!

It is so silent this morning as I write this early in the dawning day. Usually at this time people are passing by, going to school, going to work, and just going. The street in front of our house is silent this morning; even the dogs are silent. The only sounds I hear are the morning peons of praise of the birds that nest in the trees and bushes in our small garden, welcoming the day, thanking God for the passing of the storm, and singing joyfully just because they can.

It is doubly silent because I am here alone. Jun slept at the office where the electricity was restored yesterday. Our guest Fr. Riolito Ramos left at 4am for the airport to return to New York after attending the funeral of his brother in Dumaguete. Our grandchildren Bea, Bez and Boni, young ladies all, returned to their home in Sta Rosa yesterday afternoon. They were all here during the height of the storm and its slowly calming-down aftermath.

What did we do while the wind was howling outside and the rain was pelting down? The girls asked if I had any board (“bored”) games. So we all spent several hours of fun, laughter, general craziness, and learning, playing Bible Trivia. Do you know how old Moses lived to be? How about ‘how many of the ten commandments begin with “Thou shalt not…”?’ or “What was the livelihood of Priscilla and Aguila?”

No lights, no laptop, no TV, no cell phones, no radio (I ran out of batteries!), no electric fans… We were living back to the basics, like in the days of long ago memory…well, not so very many years ago even. When I was young, we only got our first B & W TV when I was in high school; my first typewriter was a small manual one that delighted in skipping every 16th letter. And we often enjoyed family time together back then without the distractions of so many things urgently going on.

While I pray that the coming typhoon season will be gentle with us, yet I welcome the storms as God’s wake-up call … to protect and nourish our environment, to appreciate today’s essentials of living that are so different from those of yesteryear, to enjoy the blessings of rainwater replenishing the water supply in the dams and giving life to our gardens and crops, to breathe the fresh, pollution-free air. And to welcome the after-the-storm silent time as a time to get my life back into focus, and focused on the meaning of life as God intended it to be.

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