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The Voyage of the Dead

July 9, 2008

It is a full two weeks since the ill-star MV Princess of the Stars fell on its side and ended bottom up some 100 meters from the shoreline of San Fernando, Romblon after being allowed to mistakenly sail into the eye of Typhoon Frank.

The vessel was carrying more than 850 souls en route to Cebu and while it nearly did reach port, its final stopover has become the unintended tomb of the Princess’s passengers and crew.

But in a somewhat macabre show, we are witnessing officials now quibbling over just how much it would cost either the government, Sulpicio Lines, or the boat’s insurers to refloat or tow the ‘Princess before anything is done to extract the highly toxic pesticide, all 10 metric tons of it, from the ship’s bowels plus the vessel’s 250,000 liters of bunker diesel fuel.

Extra care must be taken, we are told, to prevent any further loss of life.

But this writer cannot but ask, how about the dead? Just when and how do we take care of the now heavily decomposing remains of the once vibrantly alive passengers and crew?

Don’t they themselves deserve to be attended to with dispatch so they can be given proper, respectful burials?

How much longer do their mortal remains have to suffer the indignity of being entombed in a ghost ship?

When will the voyage of the dead end?

(Cross posed in Filipino Voices.org)

One Comment leave one →
  1. jazzie permalink
    July 14, 2008 6:10 pm

    Yours is better than mine because in the 1st place you’re a journalist….BTW thanks for the comment

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