This is my first ice-cold beer in weeks. I’ve just come from a poweroutaged, internetless land: Camarines Sur. Ground-zero for super typhoon Nina.
On Christmas night 2016, the last and strongest typhoon of the year struck the province. For more than four hours, Bicolanos holed themselves up from Nina’s destructive winds. A force so familiar as the sting of a siling labuyo.
I reached Camarines Sur after a 13-hour bus ride from Manila. Jumped into a habal-habal for 70 pesos and we sped into complete darkness along the Nabua-Iriga Road — a highway of fallen trees, power lines, trucks, buses. My pilot snaked through it all like a real ace.
At sunup, I stepped out to scan Nina’s ‘holiday greetings.’