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Ondoy - day 2.  Trying to get home.

[posted by Sean]

Early the next morning, we attempted to make it home again. The news report on the radio said that we got a months worth of rain in 6 hours. However, by this time, a lot of the flood waters had gone down and we were moving along pretty good, but once we hit the main road going to our place the traffic began again. We weren't the only ones trying to get back home.

We inched along for more 
than three hours, in which we 
traveled for only about one 
mile. Part of the problem was 
that there were a lot of 
abandoned cars scattered all 
over the road. We had to drive 
around them and the thousands 
of people who were walking on 
the streets.


Finally, we could go no further because the water got too deep, so we pulled out. We found some high ground, parked our van, and decided to walk the rest of the way home. I'm guessing that we were about 5 miles from home and we didn't know if the roads were passable, but we were determined to get to the rest of our family.

After that first step in to ankle deep water we were no longer timid. We started dredging along like everyone else. The water soon turned to calf, then knee high and then waist high (higher for Jess) :). I couldn't help thinking about Israel's exodus from Egypt as we joined thousands of people who were determined to get home.

When we got to the top of the road, past the flooded portions we found some enterprising tricycles (motor cycles with side cars) waiting for passengers. We were happy to find a ride for the other four or so miles to our house. We came home to some little ones who were happy to see mom and dad. Never mind not having power,  we were just grateful to be able to enter a home that was still standing.

Here are some of the more noteworthy pictures we took on our journey home.

This man is casually pedaling along on his bicycle as if it were an ordinary day.

This looked like an alley or a street . . . but it’s actually a creek ! Getting too close would result in getting carried off by the current.

Some fortunate folks get a break and hitch a ride in a dump truck

Notice the SUV in the distance ?

We watched this jeepney chug forward as far as it could, until the engine finally seized.

Drivers push their scooters and motorcycles along in the waste deep water.

You can see how high The Marikina River climbed. The stairs are covered in debris and uprooted foliage. At this point, there is still more of the stairs and a parking garage you don’t see under the water.

(Left) We wondered if the driver of this jeepney was a woman, her arm resting on the spare tire above, but upon getting closer, we saw that she was actually just a passenger, squeezed into the tiny space to the left of the driver, making use of every inch of space in this overcrowded vehicle.

This dog keeps dry as he watches the water outside.

And one of my favorite pictures of irony:

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(Click above for day by day accounts and photos of the week Typhoon Ondoy stopped Manila)