Thursday, January 17, 2013

Trauma.. Jakarta flood 2013..

People say that it is a once-every-5-year thingy. I experienced it in 2002 and again in 2007. I thought God was good that nothing of the previous scale occurred in 2012 and we were safe until 2017. NOT! Karma hits back like a bitch and here is Jakarta flooded again in 2013.

My house was still unrenovated in 2002. The flood (which from now on will be referred to as "shit-water" as the colour looks like that) entered my house up to the first step of the stair case. I still had 2 rooms (one on each level) and I was downstairs. My father and I were watching the water at late night before we decided that the water would enter the house and we had to evacuate things to level 2. I remembered having to wake up my maid and my sisters (who unbelievable could sleep!) to help us. It was a torture for my 15-year-old body at that time. It crushed my heart to see my wooden cupboard un-save-able. I could not remember how many days it lasted. But I remembered seeing weird things like snakes and fish inside the house, how I had to avoid shitting as upon flushing the water rose instead of flushed down, how my parents actually waded through the shit water to buy food, and having to ration water as our underground water tank was contaminated with the shit water. Sigh..

My house was renovated cum 2007 and it was elevated. I was confident that water would not enter so I was grumbling when my dad wanted me to help to evacuate. Although I was a stronger 20-year-old boy at this time, the things in my house have also grown bulkier and heavier. My dad was wise, the water did enter even though it was hardly as bad as 2007. The mood was much light-hearted with me and my dad would take turns at night to look at the dark sky and at the murky water hoping for miracles. At daylight, I actually read my mangas upstairs haha.. My elder sister was not in the house at that time. I remembered that my mum almost broke down when she lost contact with my sister. The last thing my mum heard from my sister was that she was riding a makeshift wooden carriage in her attempt to leave her rental room to come home. The time was like 8pm. With no electricity, it was disastrous. Everybody was worried but seeing how my mum broke down, the rest of us had to console her with words "Can you please don't think of bad things like rape or kidnap??!". In the end it became sort like a joke. My sister actually had to switch off the phone because it was too dark and she did not want to lose grip and forever lose the phone.

Ironically, I am feeling the WORST right now! I am not in the middle of the disaster but the worry is killing me. I have to admit that 2002 and 2007 did leave some traumatic scars.. In fact, I was worried that there would be flood at New Year and I would be unable to go to airport for my flight. Anyway, according to my younger sister, everything seemed normal this morning. She and my parents left for work. She sms-ed me at about 10am to say that she was trapped at office (meaning cannot go home) because the flood finally reached her. Sms-ed my mum and dad to hear that my mum actually decided to go home and now was trapped in traffic due to flood. Seriously, I don't know what is worse: trapped at office or in traffic. After that, I heard nothing from everyone, not via whatsapp, not via sms..

Reading the news scared me even more! Even the CBD areas and the presidential palace were not spared! That was an ominous sign. Usually the government will, at all cost, prevent the flood from reaching these vital places. If they are flooded, it can only mean two things. One: the other areas are already too badly submerged and people will be angry when they know that they are the "sacrificial lambs" to prevent CBD areas from being flooded or two: the flooding is so bad that if they do not open the sluice gate, the water will simply break through and damage the whole system. Well, the two things actually mean the same thing: the flood is EXTREMELY bad! I tried to call home to check whether my house was affected. I could not get through. That gave me the answer I wished not to hear: the electricity had been shut down (i.e the flood was bad).

Latest update is that the water is thigh-deep outside my house but it has not entered. My mum and my sister waded through the shit water to reach home. Thank God.. I just can't imagine having to wade through that.. Seriously, man!! Imagine the things which would contaminate your private parts o_0 I guess survival instinct is at play here... Dirty is one thing but wading through the shit water is something dangerous or even deadly: you don't know whether you would step into a hole, a ditch, a river, or step onto cockroaches, rats, snakes, etc. The part of me wants to feel that adventure but another part of me feels like puking just from imagining that.

I know worrying is not gonna help anything but I can't help but not to worry.. Sigh.. It is worse to observe all of these from afar wondering whether everyone is okay. I still hear no news about my dad.. God, my only wish is that the water does not enter my house and please keep my dad safe.. :(

Yes, even Bundaran HI is at this state.. Picture credit of The Jakarta Globe

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