Remembering Yolanda in Tacloban

Remembering Tacloban, 1 year after Yolanda

A morning walk along the once devastated streets

A morning walk along the once devastated streets

There were no more tears, only remnants of the destruction. There were no more dead around, they were now buried but not forgotten. But that ship in Anibong District is still there, reminding one of the devastation that once visited this city.

Six months after Supertyphoon Yolanda (Haiyan) devastated Tacloban, I set foot in the city which has been part of my memories. A decade ago, I was traveling around this area, climbing telecom towers in Mt. Naga-naga, visiting the cellsite at a hill, eating moron and binagol purchased from downtown and crossing back and forth San Juanico Bridge en route to Samar, Bicol Manila or Cebu.

I’ve always considered Tacloban as chaotic, especially downtown but it was part of its charm. It was only recently, when I started photographing architecture other than churches that I’ve come to appreciate the old buildings lining its streets.

But seeing the scenes on news and TV of the destruction and the ensuing chaos and problems brought by Yolanda and the crises that happened after was heart rending. I could not bear to visit the city and find it suffering. But after six months, I was there again.

The day was bright and sunny. While there were still damage to structures that can be seen along the road, business has picked up again, a motorized outrigger boat just arrived loaded with passengers, moron and binagol were still hot and sold along the usual sidestreets.

That ship in Anibong District continues to remind us of what happened a year ago. But despite the political controversies, the hardy Waray, long suffering from political negligence and incompetence of those elected, and the usual typhoons that come its way, will always triumph.

From sea to land a ship in Anibong District

From sea to land a ship in Anibong District

A tricycle parked beside the ship

A tricycle parked beside the ship

Cargo containers, ships and devastation

Cargo containers, ships and devastation

An entrepreneurial woman sells grilled food with the ships at the backgroun in Anibong District

An entrepreneurial woman sells grilled food with the ships at the backgroun in Anibong District

Tindog Tacloban (Rise Tacloban)

Tindog Tacloban (Rise Tacloban)

Despite everything, life just goes on. Passengers from another off sea barangay arrives in Tacloban

Despite everything, life just goes on. Passengers from another off sea barangay arrives in Tacloban

Estan Cabigas is freelance photographer, blogger and writer based in Makati City, the Philippines. A true blue Cebuano, he makes stunning images and meaningful photo stories. His work has been published in local and international publications including National Geographic Magazine, Geo (Germany), Sunday Times Magazine (London) and other publications. He is also a peripatetic traveler and has traveled to all 81 Philippines provinces. I'm open for work, collaborations and inquiries, including hotel, restaurant and site features and reviews.

One Comment

  1. Estan, Ang Langyaw (@LangyawMedia)
    November 8, 2014 @ 14:36

    Remembering #Tacloban, 1 year after Yolanda http://t.co/5YvGPvXBhb #rememberingyolanda http://t.co/gLggri1HkC

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