at the height of the mv princess of the stars tragedy, i noticed that the byline of the headline for several days read: by tarra quismundo, on sibuyan island. tarra was my orgmate in up journ club back in my undergrad days. sabi ko kaagad sa blockmate ko, ang galing naman ni tarra. nakakainggit!

no, it's not about making it to the front page as a banner story. i'm sure tarra had done it before, countless of times, in her 5 years at the inquirer. but there's something amazing about being on the scene, in a remote island, to cover the story. i was imagining the difficulties she must have gone through while she was there.

true enough, tama nga hinala ko. she spent 10 days there on her own with only 2 shirts, her laptop, her phone (not even a satellite phone), usb and little money in a town with no landlines (only the town hall had internet access). imagine the nightmare of submitting stories on a deadline! imagine not knowing anyone on an island!

but tarra managed to pull through. and she did a great job of covering the tragedy, translating into words what otherwise would have been unwritable. sabi nga niya: "It was not simply a case of writing about it; it became a mission to do justice to their pain through reportage." galing!

read her entire account of her experience here: Surviving_Sibuyan

see her pictures here: Sibuyan_souvenirs

now why i am blogging about this? because tarra deserves a shotout hehe. in a profession where print journalists are often underrated compared to their broadcast counterparts, i simply think they deserve more credit. congrats tarra! idol!

speaking of idols, can't wait for monday. sa wakas (hopefully), makakapagpaautograph na ako sa isa ko pang idol, howie severino. i'll have my dvd of his i-witness docus (na hindi ko pa napapanood entirely) ready, just in case. thanks to rhea for this gift.

haha, ambabaw lang ng kaligayahan ko. i don't think i'll ever reach the supreme court but you can send me to any island. now! hehe.

oh well, 15 months to go (sana di madagdagan) and it's freedom. can't wait.

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