20th May 2020 Bengal experienced the nastiest rise in winds, which was named Supercyclone Amphan. By 3.30 p.m the speed of the winds started rising and almost immediately the electricity went off everyone.
Let me give a little recap, the weather was rainy, windy cloudy from Tuesday, a day before, Amphan hit Kolkata. So, from 3.30 p.m the winds slowly rose, and from inside the house, we can hear the winds blowing and the, of course, it was raining too.
It was that time too we can connect our phones and call each other and share the experience chat over WhatsApp. Slow the clock hit 6 o’clock and the storm was rising, it was at that time too we can bear the speed, or say it is okay we experienced it before too.
But the unexpected stoke exactly at 7. 15 when it the wind speed crossed 154 Kmph, and by the sound of the wind you can guess it is something beyond. The situation lasted till 8 o.clock and somehow it became low but there were high winds and rain.
The super cyclone Amphan caused havoc in our area, uprooting trees, and electric post, leaving water clogs, here and there. Literally from inside, my house we can hear, the sounds of falling off the trees, crashing of cars, and of course not to miss the uprooting of one of the electric poles nearby.
My, mother has to close her ears, to stop herself from panicking.
Trust me this is the first scary sound of the winds that I came across in my life. Why quote myself, even my parent did not ever come across such a scary night. Last year we had to face another cyclone effect but did not call “FONI” but Amphan did take us into its clasp. And Bengal was not rescued.
It pains to see all the destruction the super cyclone has caused all across. If you come across videos of wind blowing across the city I bet you will have Goosebumps.
Post-Amphan – 21.05.20
Our damage was we lost three of our beetle nut trees, and one of a mango tree of our neighbor came and fall in our house, and damage our DTH Antenna. But the whole Bengal is in deep unrest. By turning on Facebook I must say, the pictures that my friends shared were so disturbing that I have no words to conclude.
Trees getting uprooted everywhere across the city, one of my journalist friends shared an image of a dead man lying in the water from the previous day and no one even came to help him or rescue his body till the next day. This is just one of the examples that I mentioned but there are others, as I came across the images. The most horrifying facts are the journalists giving us bytes, standing firm in mid of the catastrophic cyclone. One of the images of a journalist which I think I will share with you seems like he is holding his life in his hand with the feeling that maybe the wind is going to blow me away now!
I salute them for their heroic deeds, that they went there in the mid of the storm to bring us bytes, keeping their lives in jeopardize. Of course the camerapersons too. But I wonder why they have to risk their lives standing in between the harsh winds which were scary to hear from inside the closed windows. Maybe they have a better explanation and this may be the best adventure in their life. I really wonder that should have people not trusted their words or the satellite images of the cyclone? Was it so essential for them, to stand in the mid of the cyclone and cover the whole experience! Brave hearts for sure!
Next, coming to the Mobile signals
It is Day 1 post-Amphan, and from the morning there was no internet, oops, let me rephrase, no mobile signal, which is if you see to the area where you find the signal icons it shows an x. So, when the winds have subsided and we are having a clear sky, we cannot contact anyone, as there is no signal, No JIO, no Airtel, Vodafone, BSNL either.
So, somehow it came in my mind that let me go to my terrace and check. Well somehow, I could get signal and of course the VOLTE from JIO came and I could drop messages to the seniors of my office as work from home was not possible in the situation – NO electricity, NO internet, not even JIO.
By evening electricity came, and so does the very mobile signal but every poor. Sending a message over WhatsApp takes too much time, leaving apart other tasks.
Day 2 – 22.05.20
Well, I am feeling lucky to have electricity in my area, while others are still experiencing power failure but my broadband connection is still not available. And so does JIO very poor internet. But I must mention that still the wrecked electric poles are half hanging in my area and no electrician from the office arrived to take care of it. Just like the movie climax, waiting for their arrival to rescue us from any kind of further accident or power short circuit. Speaking about my area’s internet provider god knows where the people are, you cannot get connected with them, through phone, nor through personally visiting their office as they keep their phones switched off whenever there is no internet.
With this super slow internet I came across people pleading the govt. through their Facebook pages, as to why this condition is persisting and when it can be taken care of. Life is certainly unimaginable in this era without electricity and mobile internet, and of course, you cannot run heavy programs and software for Work from Home with this kind of slow JIO internet.
I understand this is a tough situation we are going through, already the whole globe is under the dear of the COVID 19 crisis, and this cyclone no doubt increased the pains of the people residing in Bengal. Hoping the authority can take charge of this situation soon.
Though this is a natural disaster and we have no other option rather than pray for each other, and pray for the souls who have lost their lives and help others who have lost their home (statistics say 400) in this super cyclone. Also, I really hope that our life becomes normal very soon and the authority takes charge of the uprooted trees, get the electricity back to the various parts of the city, and of course bringing back the internet connection to normal.