I even started writing this blog on my
Charlyn is my key contact at the bridge because she is the only one with a cell phone. I sent her a text message around to see how everyone was doing. She told me that the wind was really strong and the river was rising, but everyone was okay. My cell phone service was going on and off, but just after lunch she text-ed me again. She told me that some of the block walls around the bridge and near their house had fallen down from the force of the typhoon. She also told me that one of the houses got blown into the river. Thank God no one was killed!
After the worst of the typhoon had past I decided to drive over to check on my friends. Other than some minor flooding and being littered with fallen banana trees and other foliage, my neighborhood seemed to have faired well. As I began driving there I saw that the way to the bridge looked like a battle field. The streets were filled with uprooted trees, downed signs, fences, and stunned people doing their best to clean it up.
As I neared their place I noticed that the road was closed. I parked and walked a few blocks to the bridge. What at sight! About a 75 foot section of a twenty plus foot high block wall had fallen over the road and bridge. There was a large crane, dump truck, and a crew of men dismantling the remains of the wall. The path that served to get to the homes of most of the people from the bridge was completely blocked.
Looking at the foot of the bridge I could see where the kids would often gather to wave good-bye to me as I left. I remembered the time when they all posed for me at the end of the bridge.
Now that spot was covered with the remains of the block wall. The little ones who live down the covered path were now locked in until the crews and cranes could clear out all the debris. Sadly, to save money it is likely that the owner will not remove the broken cement from the walk way to their homes. Their simple walk home from school has turned into a literal hike.
As soon as my friends saw me several of them came over to me anxious to tell me about what had happened. I was amazed at the site of this huge wall hanging over the road. It looked like it could fall at any moment. They told me that this was not the only wall to have fallen; another wall fell right where their houses are. I asked if I could see them, to which they eagerly agreed. They led me down a rickety old hand made ladder that dropped about ten feet down on the side of the bridge opposite the fallen block wall. We had to slide and crawl through several small spaces until we reached their homes on the other side of the bridge. These small spaces were actually more homes of other families from the bridge.