Oman: Post-Gonu Reflections

Oman is recovering from Gonu, the cyclone that hit its coast less than two weeks ago. Many residents of Muscat lost their houses, cars and all their possessions. The luckier ones had to suffer several days without electricity or water. Recovery is swift in action though, water and electricity are now back to almost everyone in Muscat, food supplies were provided to those locked up in remote areas and the reconstruction of the roads in main areas has already started. Life is almost back to normal in Muscat, but some more time is needed for the same to be said about other damaged places like Quraiyat and Aamirat.

Bloggers in Oman are now reflecting and reporting their experiences of the cyclone. Ranjini survived the storm and went to help evacuate her friend:

On the morning of the 7th, I got a call from one of my closest friend, Poonam, who I actually had been calling pretty frequently throughout last night. She lives in one of the most low-lying areas in Muscat – right behind the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, and quite close to where my dad's office is located. She needed a huge favour – a place for her and her sister to stay until this mess was sorted out. I agreed, and when I got there to pick her up I was shocked. The boundary wall had collapsed – this wall was 4 feet high – and there was water everywhere, the level close to 6 feet of water. SUV's were drowned, and I spotted a BMX bike floating around somewhere. My friend and her sister lowered themselves down from their 2nd floor flat's balcony from some bedsheets, along with their luggage. The tenants of the ground and first floor had come up and basically 12 other strangers were forced to spend the night at their home.

Suburban is glad that her young child is fine even though she lost a lot:

We're Alive, but battered. At a friend's house where they have power and internet! Awesome. We were very lucky to lose nothing that can't be replaced, the baby girl is happy, healthy, and seems baffled by all the mud in the house. She's dying to play in it but it smells a lot like untreated sewage. Things in Al Ghubra not so good, but others have it worse.

Jawahir Jewels is grateful for all the work the authorities have done and thinks that it was unfortunate that some people contributed in making things worse:

so much was lost….. what was most upsetting was the fact that many ppl didnt take heed to the the warnings issued and when actually physically were told to move out of the dangerous areas they still didnt listen and many paid the price with lives and damage to their property……

Tia is making suggestions on what citizens could do to help the authorities:

Oman has faced many challenges before and managed to pull through, and I believe that we will get through this crisis as well. But let’s face the facts, there is a lot to be done and the government alone won’t be able to restore Oman, we as citizens need to reach out and help.

A group of Omanis are working together in collecting all the relief information regarding the Gonu cyclone in the Gonu Relief Blog:

Welcome one and all to a blog that has been especially established to monitor the situation of relief efforts in regards to the Gonu Cyclone that has hit Oman recently.
We will be focusing mainly on what is needed to be done and what can be done towards this issue.
Please feel free to make any suggestions you feel are necessary to meet that goal.

Finally, VKN posts the lessons he learnt from the Gonu experience:

1. Life is short, and any day may be your last. Live so as to not regret your last day.
2. Family is the most important thing in our tenuous lives.
3. Family is what happens to people when they spend time together. Eat meals together, with the TV off of course. Laugh together.
4. Life is easier when you work as a team.
5. Nature is powerful.
6. Water is precious.
7. We all have similar needs.
8. Good and bad exist together.
9. Time is in short supply and there are oversupplies of opportunities.
10. Sometime it is good to remember that not all the world has access to very basic things in life (water, food, electricity and other things).
11. There are so many people who invest for tomorrow rather than for today.
12. Nothing remains constant; everything is in a flux of change.


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