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Now it’s oil price increases!

Twinkling with Ninfa R. Leonardia

Yesterday was  St. Valentine’s Day. And for the first time, I think my family spent it in the most appropriate way. How? We spent the afternoon at the memorial park, visiting and praying at the graves of our beloved departed ones. Oh, I am sure that they were watching us, getting together despite the rains, as if they were still with us, and, for sure, they must have been, in spirit. Valentine’s day is a day for expressing love, and what better way is there than letting those who have gone ahead that you want them to feel that they are still with you in spirit?

***

I think there were others who had the same idea as I noted that some graves had fresh flowers on them. Well, we have All Souls Day in November, the day declared by the Church as the time for remembering the dead, but celebrating and remembering them on two days instead  of only one is, to me, a good idea. So I hope other  families will also think of their deceased family members, not only on November 2, but also on February 14. By the way, I know that it has become customary for Catholics, especially to mark their annual visits to cemeteries and memorial parks on November one, but the date is supposed to be all Saints Day and November 2 is All Souls Day.

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Meanwhile, when is our country going to acquire the COVID vaccines that are expected to halt the progress of this pandemic? It was quite fearsome to hear the news that cases of the latest COVID variant have surfaced in Davao. Who knows where else will the virus pop up with people now freer to travel, and more are coming home from foreign lands to be with their loved ones, or because there are no more jobs for them in the foreign places they have gone to? I hope that our next big problem will not be unemployment!

***

But what a time to announce price increases in oil, especially the types needed by vehicles ordinarily used by people to commute to and from their work, and for children to be brought to their schools. Unless some sudden change is announced, we will be seeing big increases in gasoline, diesel and kerosene prices today or tomorrow. And the increases are expected to be more than a peso per liter, especially in gasoline! Maybe it’s time to learn horseback riding again, although horses might cost more than cars!

***

In the United States, however, oil prices do not seem to bother them more than the political problems they are facing. Reports say that ex-president Donald Trump is facing his second impeachment case. But the guy has already been out of office since November, so why is there need to impeach him? I guess I am just ignorant about their laws involving politics, but anyway, it does not concern us anymore since we have long been independent of their country.

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As if man-made problems like political ones were not enough, the world is now also having to deal with Nature’s caprices. In the Philippines, we have been experiencing  floods . And in Japan they have recently gone through an earthquake rated at Magnitude 7.11. As far as I can recall, we have never gone through such a terrifying kind of quake, and we should pray that we never do. Our residence, and even business structures may not be able to survive such powerful shaking! I wonder what the casualty was in Japan since I have not seen reports on them so far.

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Both the World Health Organization and the UNICEF have been reported to be critical  of the way vaccines against the COVID are being distributed, noting its “inequality”. But if such vaccines have to be purchased by the countries needing them, surely we cannot compete with the wealthier ones who can afford any price to be able to immunize their people. I have not yet seen any reports on the types  of vaccines now available and how many have been able to take advantage of it, but I fear that if there has to be a bidding for approving it, we would surely be outbidded.

***

One of the most horrible reports I heard recently is that in Mexico, there are plans to set up mass  graves for the fatalities from the COVID! Isn’t that horrifying? Does it mean that they have no more spaces in their cemeteries for individual burial sites? That may not matter to the dead, but the ones they left behind will surely protest against it. Do they not believe in cremation  which will require much smaller spaces? Sorry to be so morbid, I guess that is due to having gone to the memorial park yesterday, where I included all those lying there in my prayers for them to rest in peace.*

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