extra baggage

i spent a day and a half in the towns of real, infanta, and general nakar in quezon, and there were fewer times when i felt so amazingly and helplessly useless. as i unabashedly reported previously, SMTD has changed our ETD at least three times already, and i was last informed that 6am would be our assembly time. at way past 10am, we were still at mcdonald’s in katipunan, waiting for our boss to wake up. when finally we left, my ride was delayed when we had to wait for another vehicle which figured in a minor accident at the intersection of katipunan and aurora blvd. getting to the eastern seaboard of quezon through antipolo was a little tricky, and the way, though well-paved, winds most dizzyingly through the province of rizal, parts of laguna, and the southern end of the sierra madre. i was previously unaware that quezon was accessible through this route.

finally, we knew we were near our destination when our convoy of several ragtag government pick-ups and MTD’s new black nissan patrol squeezed itself through narrow paths bulldozed between chunks of earth that sat on the highway. the devastation in this part of quezon is unimaginable in its scale, though in all honesty, i think the damage is largely attributable to something geological. it cannot be completely blamed on logging, illegal or otherwise. it cannot be denied that there are beasts armed with chainsaws wrecking havoc in the forests of sierra madre, and their work is all too evident in the beaches facing lamon bay, where stumps, uprooted trees, and branches have almost entirely covered the sand. however, the landslides that buried these towns came from entire sections of the modest hills which lined the western side of these vertical towns. there are hardly any bald patches on these hills, save for the fact that there are all too evident scars left by the landslides. in many places, boulders larger than many of the homes are left on the highway. i suppose they’re still trying to figure out a way of how to get rid of these things.

the reason i felt like i had contributed nothing but my appetite was that MTD surrounds himself with an army of half-witted goons who are used to long hours of idleness. there were at least 6 lawyers in tow, including myself, and i suppose i was better off walking through the streets to survey the damage. MTD is foremost a politician rather than a public servant, and while his schedule is filled to bursting with meetings and dialogues, he can offer no more than sweet palliatives. i doubt very much if his concern for prosecuting illegal loggers has anything to do with a real concern for the environment. i think he’s just there to implement a policy. it’s not exactly where his heart is. we had accomplished little, because the barangay captains were a little too uncooperative. we still have no witnesses to nail anyone who’s worth nailing for illegal logging.

i returned with no pictures, although for many minutes, our car would run through kilometers of highway filled with piles of mud, rocks, and trees. there are parts of these towns where you almost do not feel the terror that filled many homes during those nights in november when the rain came pouring. but for those which felt the intensity of the rains and the rampaging mud, the extent of the devastation is amazing, such that many weeks later, people still walk around in galoshes. while i was there, i was enchanted by the thought of visiting the polilio islands. one of these days.
did somebody said polilio?
i really want to go there. but for selfish reasons of course. =)
("whispers"... it's about a girl)

the monsterbot
Re: did somebody said polilio?
well, at least there's someone who'd go with me in case i push through. hehe. my reasons are selfish as well. i hear the people there aren't friendly. i hope this isn't true.