Glad to be safe

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As things stand out now, we must brace ourselves amid the global health emergency that has caught us in tenterhooks these past several days now. It is indeed no light matter to sneeze it out just like that, for this latest strain of the dreaded coronavirus is no less lethal than we think. Not the kind of hogwash, very much real, very much here and now.

Even as we dribble in and out of it, every little chance upon us, we could never dismiss the threat like it were just wishful thinking. No sir and no ma’am, it’s here and now, as no less than our government health officials have been agog all over, telling us the latest update: one PUI (person under infection) is presently going through the treatment needed at a government health facility, under very rigid isolated condition. NCV has reached our land.

For now, it is best that prudence takes the better half of what we think. Extraordinary measures may not yet be called upon, but the wiser precaution remains: stay hygienic, stay out of close contact with anyone, with face mask on or off, stay out of crowded places, where contact-convergence can happen.

Glad to be safe than sorry, anytime at all.

Speaking of time, that’s what we need to race against the clock, in ensuring that the rehabilitation projects lined up this year — no doubt upon Hizzoner’s unrelenting efforts — gets to get off from blueprint plans to on-the-ground realities. More often than not, the planning and conceptual work do take some good ol’ time to materialize, let alone be ready for execution. By our collective experience, it just doesn’t work that way. Unless, everyone’s on board, all abilities and persuasions thrown behind a united front. And that, dearie, takes so much more time.

Fine, let’s be immersed in all glad tidings for the Year 2020. Fine, let our hopes soar high and robust that the better Baguio we’ve been striving for all these years will finally get going, and get going real fast.
Fine, let us be determined that the very core of our collective endeavors, national and local, expand into a community-driven passion that will get us through the rehabilitation effort ahead — our outdated, inefficient sewage system, our dwindling forest canopy, our congested roadways, our battered parks and public spaces — to push the city back into the threshold of manageable carrying capacity.

Surely, there is much to exalt when wave of national sympathy to Baguio’s plight and urgent needs has come into our midst, no doubt in kind response to the kind of local governance that now presides over domestic requirements. Anytime there’s that national predisposition, we take it with gladsome gratefulness. Anytime, national money comes our way, we erupt in jubilation, thankful that our needs are high up there in national attention.

But, us locals must do our well-deserved part. Hard work, real complete and competently endeavoted staff work, the likes of which we remember FVR in his heyday used to require from us. That’s what loosens up national aid, that’s what will realistically get us going full blast in re-directing the pathways towards rehabilitation.

As Hizzoner wisely put it in meeting Cabinet officials who came over for a timely look-see: Let’s do the job the only way it can be done as part of one solid partnership called Team Baguio. By our unfractured unity, we’ll get there. If it takes inch by inch, moment by moment, let’s do it. All out for a better Baguio!

Time and again, amid the difficulties we have historically faced, we always counted on our sense of belonging and pride, discovering every which way that things can be done. Time and again, given the strong conviction and perseverance that go into the effort, we have succeeded every way drives us into.

After all, a greening Baguio is all it takes for us to use the chance of getting better. Better air quality, better water quality, better quality in what we do and accomplish. The nationally-aided rehabilitation give us the golden chance of a lifetime that we should never allow to slip us by. For these are exciting opportunities to harness each other’s time, trust and treasure towards the better Baguio that we are called upon to achieve. Time is on our side this time.