Life in the Fast Lane


Daily Bayanihan

By 4:45 PM , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I believe with all of my being that Filipinos are heroes.

Last week's almost daily heavy rainfall brought out the heroes within us: 12,000 prisoners in a Muntinlupa jail who gave up their meals so that the food could be donated to flood victims; kids who used up their allowances to buy relief goods in supermarkets; teenagers and yuppies who used their days off from school/work to volunteer for relief ops and help distribute the goods at the different evacuation centers; thousands upon thousands of netizens who went online to share information related to rescue operations, the flood situations everywhere, and what relief goods were needed in so-and-so evacuation center; nameless policemen, firemen, church workers, social workers, volunteers, doctors, nurses, ordinary citizens and the like who braved the rain and flood just to make sure people were rescued, fed, clothed properly, and had a roof over their heads.

Photo from Google.

Photos that my sister took of the relief ops held at our church.

Photo I took of the relief ops at Ateneo: the conveyor-belt system wherein items were segregated then lined up, and people passed by from area to area until one whole "goodie bag" was complete. Once 100 bags are filled up, off they went to the nearest evacuation center.

Now that it has stopped raining (somewhat; although we're bracing ourselves for a typhoon that's on its way), reality has called us back. Schools have resumed their classes and many people have gone back to work. My Twitter and Facebook feeds are back to random things like the Spice Girls reuniting for the Olympics' closing ceremonies; days ago, everything was related to #reliefPH, #rescuePH, #floodPH, and #savedPH.

And while it would be great if we could keep doing our part by donating (many of our kababayan are still in evacuation centers since they'd lost their homes), I believe we can continue to practice bayanihan every day in so many ways. 

Imagine how much better things would be if we always thought of other people before ourselves — not just when we're faced with calamities.

If we'd use the signal light to transfer to the next lane, instead of cutting the driver behind us without any warning.

If we'd follow the rules and regulations on the road (i.e. buses staying within the bus lanes, pedestrians crossing on pedestrian lanes), instead of doing our own thing.

If we'd let people out of elevators and MRT doors first, instead of barging in and clogging up the pathways.

If we'd give up our seat for people who need to sit more than we do (i.e. pregnant women, moms with kids, senior citizens) in public transport vehicles, instead of pretending that we don't see them. 

If we'd dispose of our trash properly, instead of needlessly tossing it onto sidewalks or out of our car windows.

If we'd say sorry after having bumped someone, instead of rushing off without even turning back to offer a sheepish smile.

Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

If we can be heroes to our kababayan when the going gets tough, we can definitely be heroes every single day in little ways. 

All we have to do is look around us and see that we're not alone. That we're here because people need us to be here.

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