Live from Isabela, Day 1
ILAGAN CITY, ISABELA (UPDATED)–Our crew cab raced through the deserted countryside. All around, electric posts hung like torn picket fences. Uprooted leafless trees choked the road. The sky grew darker by the minute.
It was no horror movie, but our adrenaline was amped up.
The wind beat at our ears. Our heads throbbed and our stomachs growled. We already ran on empty, yet we had to finish the stretch.
Our main equipment broke down on us, and our plan B was 30 kilometers away.
In front, reporter Jeff Canoy and his driver asked around for directions to an obscure barangay we could not even spell.
At the back, my MacBook converted Jeff’s voiceover package. I asked his cameraman to set my bags on the other end of our seat. My thumb kept switching on a cellphone that kept switching off.
The time, 5:30 p.m. Our likely arrival, 6:00 p.m., 30 minutes before TV Patrol. Time to send our 71 MB package, God knows how long.
Welcome to typhoon-ravaged Isabela, and another case of the so-called Murphy’s Law–”Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.”
On the field, it tends to be true. And if you take it from Jeff, it’s always happened to him in Isabela.
It was something that went wrong. A storm named Juan (a.k.a. Megi) tossed and toppled Northern Luzon. But it lashed its strongest fury here. The best preparation stood little chance against our first “super” typhoon in a while.