Clouds are beautiful to behold, exuding an aura of peace and comfort. How often have we lied down on our backs to watch the sky to form whimsical shapes from these clouds? To me, they represent our lofty dreams, which may remain unreachable if we don’t take the first step to achieve them.
When I was still a Mass Communications student, my dreams were as numerous as clouds. Because I was often confused of which path to take, my father had to constantly remind me to “take one step at a time.”
A step is all it takes to begin a process. But in this fast-paced world, people often get impatient with taking time with the small steps. But these, I realized, teach us the importance of enduring a process.
I’ve been so used to running fast that I almost missed God’s “go-signal” and his full assurance that I would land my first job. Little did I know that all my dreams would converge at one point: being a weather reporter for Panahon TV.
My fist two weeks passed like a storm. I’ve always been passionate about television production, but learning it as an employee made me wonder if I was really cut out for this trade. Failing to instantly grasp the basics of my work, I got frustrated and blamed myself for not adapting easily. Still, God spoke to my heart.
“Yet man is born to trouble,
But if I were you, I would appeal to God;
I would lay my cause before him.
He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed,
miracles that cannot be counted.
He provides rain for the earth;
he sends water on the countryside.
The lowly he sets on high,
and those who mourn are lifted to safety.”
That moment, I came to my senses. I began to think and speak in positive ways, rejecting fear. It helped that my mom reminded me to be like David in the face of Goliath, and not to accept defeat in my mind.
In this ongoing journey, I am blessed to have helpful peers and superiors. They help me navigate this difficult road, teaching me that like gloomy clouds, hardships eventually pass. They remind me that I need to respect the time and effort to learn new skills. Like a diamond in the rough, I need these challenges to release my full potential.
With the help of the whole team, I am now engaging myself fully into the gift of serving people through weather forecasting. And I have to say that there are moments when I feel like a cloud myself—light, worthy of attention, and most important of all, moving with purpose.
What’s the weather today? To get the answer straight from forecasters, we simply go online, or get hold of other forms of media such as the television, radio, and newspaper.
But in remote areas where such ready information is unavailable, weather is predicted by cloud watching. This is true especially among farmers, whose cloud observation skills have helped them in managing their crops. As David Seidman, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at the Northwestern University
wrote: Clouds are the harbingers of weather. Their shape, height, color, and sequence foretell coming events.
To get started on your weather forecasting journey, familiarize yourself with these clouds.
These clouds are the most usual of the high clouds. Described as thin and often wispy, the higher these clouds are, the higher the chance of good weather.
These clouds are so thin that through them, the sun and moon can be seen. When you see this type of clouds, expect weather changes within 12 to 24 hours. Just like cirrus and cirrocumulus clouds, cirrostratus clouds do not produce rain, but together with decreasing pressure, they signify worsening weather, particularly rain within the next 8 to 24 hours. This is especially true when there is an increase in thickness and amount of the lower clouds.
These clouds appear in small and high patches. Composed of super-cool crystals, these typically bring fair but cold weather.
Alto clouds, made of ice crystals and water droplets, frequently block sunlight. These clouds often form before the onslaught of storms with continuous rain.
Altostratus clouds almost conceal the whole sky, and are usually gray and blue in color, signifying storms.
Altocumulus clouds consist of super-cool water droplets. They don’t usually generate rain, but may indicate a weather change within a day or so. When you see these large fluffy sheets in the morning, blocking the sun, prepare for a thunderstorm sometime in the afternoon onwards.
Stratus clouds exist in the lower layer of the atmosphere. These clouds like to hang around just above tall buildings, blocking sunlight and bringing precipitation. Thick clouds mean heavy rain so if you see a huge gray blanket hanging low in the sky, it’s time to go inside.
Stratocumulus clouds generally show up as a low, lumpy layer of clouds occasionally accompanied by a weak-intensity precipitation. To make the distinction between stratocumulus and altocumulus clouds, point your hand toward the cloud. If the cloud is about the size of your fist, then it is stratocumulus.
Thick, dark, shapeless and solid in appearance, these clouds indicate heavy rain lasting for several hours.
So the next time you’re outdoors, look up! There’s more to clouds than just being sky ornaments; they are powerful weather predictors that can help you plan your day and ensure your safety.
written by Panahon TV interns, Elaine Gonzales and Raleth Enriquez
Contrary to popular belief, the rains don’t have to ruin your travel plans. Though destinations may be limited by inclement weather, you can still enjoy these three activities that will relieve your travel-itchy feet.
#1 Go on a muddy adventure!
If you’re up for a thrilling experience, try the Dune Buggy Adventure in Puerto Galera in Mindoro. The rain-induced rough and muddy roads are the perfect terrain for driving the dune buggy around natural obstacles. And because studies show that worrying less boosts your body’s immune system, we recommend taking a break from city life by taking on this adventure packed with mental and physical benefits.
To get to X-treme Sports Philippines, ride the air-conditioned bus going straight to Batangas pier via CALABARZON Expressway for less than 200 pesos. Travel time will take around 2 hours.
Upon arrival in Batangas pier, go to Terminal 3 and find the ticket booth of the ferry going to Puerto Galera. Passengers are required to pay a Terminal Fee of 30 pesos per person, while Environmental User Fee for tourists going to Puerto Galera is 50 pesos.
Puerto Galera has 4 major points of entry so make sure that the ferry is bound for White Beach. It is located at the Holy Child School in Santo Nino (opposite the Shell petrol station), just outside of Puerto Galera, on the way to White Beach. Don’t forget to look out for their signs but it is very easy to get by jeepney, tricycle or motorbike.
Affordable activity by just P500 for 6 laps P100 for passenger per ride…
For inquiries, contact Herman on +63-(0)917-552-8114 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org for booking.
#2 Chews your own adventure!
If outdoor adventures are limited during the rainy season, it’s no holds barred for your taste buds! So why not travel a bit farther to indulge in no less than the country’s culinary capital—Pampanga? The home of great cooks trained by the Spaniards during the colonial period, this province abounds with heirloom recipes passed on from generation to generation. By car, Pampanga is just one hour away from Metro Manila via the NLEX.
In Clark Field in Angeles, Pampanga, the Binulo Resturant is best known for serving authentic Capampangan cuisine, and the Aeta method of cooking food in bamboo. Indulge in their signature dishes, such as Pangat na Ulang, Beef Kare Kare and Suman with Mango Ice Cream. Expect to spend P120 to P150 per person here.
Still in the same area, Didi’s Pizza has been serving Filipino-style pizzas since the 1970s. Popular for their sweet tomato sauce and locally produced cheese, this restaurant sells over 200 boxes of pizza a day!
Don’t want to leave the city? Take your pick from the various food parks mushrooming all over the metro. This way, you can sample different cuisines under one roof. Just make sure that the area is well protected and comfortable, allowing you to stay dry even when it rains.
#3 Culture Shock
Indoor activities don’t have to be boring. Enrich the mind and find inspiration in our country’s top museums. Now is the perfect time to check out the Spoliarium at the National Museum in Ermita, Manila. Getting here is convenient as it’s only a few minutes’ walk from LRT-1’s United Nations Station. Open on Tuesdays to Sundays, from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, the entrance fee is only P150 pesos for adults, and is free on Sundays! Prepare to breathe in the most important ethnographic, anthropological, archaeological and visual artistry of the Philippines from the prehistoric period to the modern times.
If, by chance, you find yourself in the “country’s summer capital” during the rainy season, we suggest you visit the widely hailed as a master of contemporary Philippine art, “BenCab Museum” which houses nine galleries, a café and one function room for workshops, seminars and other art- related activities.
The museum is at Km.6 Asin Road, a brief 15-minute drive from the center of Baguio City. You can also take a jeepney at the terminal near the Baguio Market. Bencab Museum is open daily except on Mondays from 9:00AM to 6:00PM. Entrance fee is PHP 100.00 for students with valid school ID, and PHP 80.000 for seniors/PWD with valid IDs.
Still outside the metro, but not as far is the Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo Rizal, which offers an overlooking view of the city skyline, several art galleries and an open-air Mediterranean-inspired villas, surrounded by crafted green gardens. Pinto means door in Filipino, and the museum aims to be a gateway for modern and contemporary art.
Open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, the museum can be reached through public transportation. Just take the LRT Line 2 and get off at the Santolan Station. From there, take a jeepney or an FX bound for Antipolo (look for jeepneys bound for Antipolo-Simbahan-Junction or Antipolo-Shopwise), Tanay (Tanay-Antipolo), or Teresa.Get off at the Ynares Center, ride a tricycle and ask the driver to drop you at the Grand Heights Subdivision (some drivers may not be familiar with the museum)
So round up your family and friends and squeeze out some fun from the rainy season. Remember that rain or shine, the opportunity to learn something new always awaits!
After the scorching heat of the previous months, rain showers and thunderstorms are now taking center stage. Apart from risks to our health, the rainy season also poses threats for those on the road.
Driving is more dangerous in heavy downpour, especially at night. To help ensure your safety, here are some tips:
Roads are more slippery when wet. Remember that there should be a four-second interval in between cars, so avoid tailgating or driving too close to the car in front of you. This helps avoid accidents, giving you enough time to brake or take action in case the car in front of you suddenly stops or swerves.
TURN WIPERS ON
Before you drive, ensure that your wipers and washer systems are functional. Front visibility can be hampered by hard rubber on old wipers, while dysfunctional washers that are unable to effectively clean the windshield can distort the view. Replace wipers regularly or at least once a year.
YES TO HEADLIGHTS
According to Autoindustriya.com, turning the headlights on does not improve your vision during rains, but increases your car’s visibility to traffic. This way, the drivers behind will be able to gauge their distance from you.
NO TO HAZARD LIGHTS
Hazard lights limit, not only your vision, but also that of drivers of the cars adjacent to you. These flashing lights, which can be very distracting, should only be used during emergencies or when you want to warn others that your vehicle has become a road hazard.
KNOW THE TERRAIN
It pays to familiarize yourself with your destination—not only with directions on how to get there, but also the location’s topography. Being informed about choke points and flood-prone areas can help divert you from danger and wasted time. If you are driving within Metro Manila, check out MMDA’s (Metropolitan Manila Development Authority) list of more than 80 flood-prone areas to avoid during a heavy downpour. Get the complete list: https://www.facebook.com/Panahon.TV/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1120283194682184
Take caution in driving through moving water especially if the ground is totally obscured. Stop the car before entering the flooded area and check the water level. If the water is deeper than the bottom of your doors or the bottom third of your wheels, attempting to drive through it might damage your electronic control systems. Look for a detour instead.
Road hazards are much harder to see at night. Watch out for road hazards such as open manholes, street diggings, humps and gullies. Aside from these, be aware of pedestrians or commuters. During rains, pedestrians carry umbrellas, which might limit their vision, causing them to overlook your vehicle.
HIT THE BRAKE & HAVE A BREAK
If you have problems with visibility or if you’re feeling uncertain about the road or terrain, find a safe place to park for a while. Learn to wait until the rain stops and for the flood waters to subside. Sometimes, it’s better to wait than to risk your vehicle and safety.
MONITOR THE WEATHER
Chances of rain, expected temperature, thunderstorms and flood alerts – being informed about these can save you. Knowing what the weather will be like within the next 24 hours will give you an idea on how traffic will behave throughout the day.
If the weather is really bad, think twice about going out. If not, it’s better to stay home and be safe rather than expose yourself to harm.
August 1, 2016
Monday morning in rush-hour traffic was my first hurdle as I struggled to reach the PAGASA Flood and Weather Forecasting Center on time. It was my first day as PanahonTV’s newest weather reporter and thankfully, I reached the studio at 8 AM. Here, I met my fellow on-cam reporters, and the people who worked behind the scenes of the country’s first all-weather television program.
Though this was not my first foray into media, I was nervous about this new journey. Before Panahon TV, I was a reporter for NET25 covering political issues that had me shuttling to the Malacañang Palace, the Supreme Court, Comelec, the Philippine Senate and Congress. Now I was covering an entirely different beat: the weather, an ever-changing phenomenon that had shaped this country in different aspects—economically, socially, physically and psychologically. This was something new to me, but still, it fulfilled my personal advocacy of public service.
I resigned from my former post because I realized that I had put work commitments above my family, friends and even myself. I realized that I needed to let go of practices that were no longer good for me.
To make the change, I asked myself everyday if my choices were enriching my life and spirit. This was one of the many reasons why I applied to Panahon TV.
Right now, I may still be feeling my way around this new career path, but I also feel a significant shift—one that puts my work in harmony with my life. I revel in my new purpose: to be able to reach out to my fellow Filipinos by giving them reliable information about the weather.
Sometimes I get flashbacks of my former life. I clearly remember when I was still on the field, covering Typhoon Sendong striking Northern Mindanao, Visayas and Palawan in 2011.I was there, reporting about deaths and families who had lost their homes due to flashfloods and landslides.
I was a first-hand witness when a storm surge hit Metro Manila also in 2011.
Floods and landslides from Baguio to Bulacan were staples among my news reports.
I was there to report the things as they happened, and after they had happened. But now, I realize that I’ve been given the opportunity to help prevent these sad stories from repeating themselves. By disseminating information on weather forecasts and possible disasters, I help spread the awareness that preparedness is an effective tool against unnecessary loss of lives and suffering.
As a Panahon TV reporter, I am able to continue my goal to be a servant of public service. This is my life, my dedication, and I look forward to sharing it with you.
Kathmandu – More than a year after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake shook Nepal, the city held a gathering of peacemakers and peacebuilders last July 27-30, 2016, hosted by the Universal Peace Federation and the Partliamentarians Peace Council of Nepal.
About the Universal Peace Federation
Founded by Korean religious leader and political activitist Reverend Sun Myung Moon and his wife, the Universal Peace Federation, with chapters in over 150 nations, is a worldwide network of individuals and organizations dedicated to building a world of peace centered on universal and spiritual values. True Love, manifested through living for the sake of others, is the ideal and guiding principle of the Universal Peace Foundation.
International Leadership Conference
The Universal Peace Federation organized this year’s International Leadership Conference with the theme: Addressing the Critical Challenges of Our Time: The Role of Government, Civil Society and Faith Based Organizations.
The conference addressed peace issues with sessions on peace-building, human rights, overcoming extremism, and the roles of religion and faith-based organizations, media, and climate change.
Dr. Thomas Walsh, President of the Universal Peace Federation said in an interview with Panahon.TV, “The most significant outcome as we discussed critical issues from climate change to the growing problem of violent extremisim is that we brought together representatives of diverse nations, nations of different religious, cultural ideological background, collaborating, working together to examine these problems.
At the culminating activity, parliamentarians pledged their support at the launch of the International Assocation of Parliamentarians for Peace. Five-time Speaker of the House of Representatives from the Philippines and Founding Chairman of the International Conference of Asian Political Parties of the UPF Presiding Council, Jose de Venecia, Jr., led the signing of the pledges for peace.
Climate Change and the resulting rise in sea levels have been affecting big and small nations alike. In this session, Hon. Anuradha Jayaratne, Deputy Minister of Environment of Sri Lanka, Hon. Ramkumar Sharma, Member of Parliament of India, Hon. Prataprao Ganpatrao Jadhav, Member of Parliament of India, shared the effects of climate change on their respective countries and their courses of action to mitigate this global concern.
Hon. Jose De Venecia, Jr. gave one of the keynote remarks at the inaugural session. Meanwhile, Atty. Dante Liban spoke at the session on Overcoming Extremism and Promoting the Peaceful Resolution of Conflict: The Role of Religion and Faith-Based Organization. Philippine broadcast journalist Aljo Bendijo shared his experience at the session for media.
Rev. Julius Malicdem, Chairman of the Universal Peace Federation Philippines facilitated the closing session.
According to Dr. Thomas Walsh, “Continuous dialogue and collaboration will be held in different parts of the world as the International Association of Partliamentarians for Peace tackles the critical challenges of our time in line with with the UPF’s mission to transform this world into a world of lasting peace, human development and human dignitiy for all people.”
The conference concluded with the presentation of the Peace Awards by Dr. Thomas G. Walsh. Hon. Ek Nath Dhakal acknowledged all the delegates for a successful international leadership conference.
Report from Donna May Lina, Panahon TV Executive Producer
Every year on August, astronomy enthusiasts look forward to a spectacular event known as the Perseid Meteor Shower.
But 2016 is not a usual year for sky spectators.
In a press statement, NASA meteor expert Bill Cooke dubbed this year’s most popular meteor shower of the year as a surge. “This Perseid outburst coming up in August — you could think of it in simplistic terms as Jupiter’s gravity causing the particles to concentrate in front of Earth’s path… this year, instead of seeing about 80 Perseids per hour, the rate could top 150 and even approach 200 meteors per hour.”
Originating from the constellation Perseus (named after the Greek mythological hero), a few Perseids can be typically seen each night between July 17 and August 24. This year, its peak will happen on August 13.
In an interview with PanahonTV, PAGASA Space Sciences and Astronomy Section (SSAS) Chief Engr. Dario L. dela Cruz said that Perseid meteor shower will peak between 11:00 PM of August 12 until 5:00 AM of August 13.
However, the weather condition will play an important role for spectators in the Philippines. Currently, the southwest monsoon or habagat prevails in the country, bringing cloudy skies and rains especially over the western part.
“Depende sa weather. Kapag maulap, mahirap makita. May iba, ‘yung malalaking meteors, tatagos sa ulap.” (It depends on the weather. We’ll hardly see under cloudy skies, but large meteors might streak through clouds.)
Those who are lucky might see roughly 50 meteors per hour under favorable sky conditions.
In case you’ll miss the event, NASA will launch an online live streaming which can be accessed through this link: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nasa-msfc
A few weeks from entering the “ber” months, here are eight things you should know about the 8th month of the year in the aspects of weather and astronomy.
1. Habagat = Rain
The effect of the Southwest Monsoon prevails this month and may be aggravated by a weather disturbance. Locally known as Hanging Habagat, these warm and moist winds will bring rain mostly in the western section of Luzon and Visayas.
Another weather system making its appearance is the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), an area where winds coming from the northern and southern hemispheres meet. When the winds converge, convective clouds are formed, bringing rains in affected areas.
The ITCZ is also considered as the breeding ground of the Low Pressure Area (LPA), which may develop and intensify into it a tropical cyclone or “bagyo”. However, the Ridge of the High Pressure area (HPA) could still extend over the boundary and may bring warm and fair weather in certain areas.
2. Bagyo Season far from over
According to PAGASA, an average of 2 to 4 tropical cyclones enter the Philippine Area
of Responsibility (PAR) every August. According to PAGASA Weather Forecaster Gener Quitlong, the impending La Niña may also increase the number and intensity of tropical cyclones.
3. “Hit or miss”
In terms of cyclone tracks, the historical record of PAGASA shows two scenarios. Cyclones may hit land, particularly the Luzon area or may just move closer to the landmass before moving farther away, sparing our country.
4. Normal temperatures
In Metro Manila, temperatures may range from 24.2 to 31.3 degrees Celsius. Metro Cebu will have 25 degrees Celsius as its normal minimum temperature and 31.7 degrees Celsius as the normal maximum. In Mindanao, particularly in Metro Davao, temperatures may reach 24 to 31.7 degrees Celsius.
5. Near-normal to normal rainfall
After several months of way below-normal rainfall and drought, affected areas may now experience improved rainfall conditions. Most parts in the country will experience near- normal or 81% or more of the normal amount of rainfall. If the Habagat becomes dominant, rains may be concentrated in the western section of Luzon and Visayas.
6. Looming La Niña
Based on the latest report from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), La Niña is expected to develop this year, but may not be as strong as the previous La Niña episode that occurred in 2010-2011.
La Niña is characterized by the unusual large-scale cooling of ocean temperatures in the Central and Eastern Equatorial Pacific (CEEP). Though there is no chance for El Niño to re-develop, there is a 50- 60% probability of a La Niña development in the 3rd quarter of this year and may last until the end of 2016.
La Niña is often associated with wet conditions in some parts of Asia including the Philippines. It will bring more rains, slightly cooler temperatures, and moderate to strong tropical cyclone activities.
7. Shooting stars
Look up! According to PAGASA, August is an ideal time for skywatchers and astronomy enthusiasts. This month, spectators may enjoy the Perseids Meteor Shower, which will peak in the late evening to the early morning hours of August 12 to 13. If favorable weather permits, one can observe at least 50 meteors or more.
8. Parade of planets
Did you miss the alignment of five planets last February? Fret not; the space has something in store for you this month! Five bright planets in the solar system will once again align in the night sky, visible to the naked eye.
One will be able to witness Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn by tracing a line away from the setting sun. The best time to see this event is on August 18 when the moon is on its full phase. The light from the full moon will help illuminate the fainter planets, making it more visible for the observer. It is advisable to find a dark and unobstructed area – without low lying buildings or trees.
World Meteorological Organization (WMO)
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)