and then we came to the end

wrap-up #04

Manila, 1 February—To say that January felt like an entire year crammed in four weeks is an understatement. I’ve never quite been as glad to have made it to the end of a month, hehe.

Anyway—because a lot has happened, this is particularly useful: Our friends from @PhilstarNews put together this rather comprehensive thread of January’s major notes—Australia, an almost World War, Taal, Kobe Bryant, and of course, the novel coronavirus.

Also, this must be said: Their GIF use is on point, by the way, and I am living for it.

CNN Philippines also found the first 31 days of January compelling enough to make a month-ender report:

I haven’t really been a fan of this government, but the organizational ineptness has been on full show this month, in particular. Most notably, top leadership failed to respond adequately to our primary disasters, namely the Taal Volcano eruption and the 2019 nCov outbreak.

Instead, it opted to overreact to two absolutely non-urgent matters: Sen. dela Rosa’s US Visa cancellation (which the President responded to quite immediately by declaring the termination of the Visiting Forces Agreement with the US in retaliation) and the death of basketball superstar Kobe Bryant (which the House Speaker responded to by hosting an exhibit at the House of Representatives).

Palace response to the 2019 nCov outbreak has been most disheartening, in particular. Following the confirmation of PH’s first case on Thursday, top leadership announced Friday that they were convening a high-level meeting… next week. Had we been in a movie, we’d all be dead by Sunday.


Anyway, some useful links amid the 2019 nCov outbreak:

Unrelated to nCov: We made two videos from our Sinulog coverage, and we finally got them out this week!

  • Nanay Victoria is a candle vendor at Magellan’s Cross, and a Sto Niño devotee for more than 50 years. During the Fiesta Señor, she spends her days dancing and praying for other people.

  • Shiela heads the Basilica’s social media team of young volunteers in charge of covering the Fiesta Señor activities at the Basilica. With Masses every hour, devotees tuning in from all over the world, and one of the country’s biggest Basilicas at the center of it all—how does one social media team manage all of that? Shiela offers some ideas.

So that was January! Whew. I’m glad we’ve made it past the year’s FIRST 31 DAYS. Can you imagine how long that was?? Unbelievable haha. But here we are, still standing.

Hope the rest of 2020 is much, much kinder.



Ps. These first 31 days have been made more bearable, thanks to C, who deserves a shout-out for being infinitely patient and, of course, cute beyond measure. Thank you love.