By SHAHANAAZ HABIB
Date: October 4, 2009.
PADANG: School teacher Yurnalis Amir had saved up for five years to build a home.
He painted it bright orange and had planned to move in at the end of this month with his school teacher wife and four children.
The earthquake on Wednesday damaged the house and destroyed his dream.
He spent 300mil rupiah (RM108,000) to build the two-storey home in Pariaman using his and his wife’s savings, as well as loans from relatives.
Now, Yurnalis can’t even stay in the house the family was living in earlier.
That too is all gone, flattened to the ground and reconstructing the new house needs time and money.
For now, he has bought some planks and plans to put up a makeshift wooden structure on the site of his home.
Asked if he was heartbroken that his new home is gone even before he managed to live in it, the school teacher said: “I see it as something given to me.
Some here have looked at the devastating quake as a lesson from God.
Budin, one of the lucky ones who escaped the quake with his home intact, said the disaster was a wake-up call from Allah.
“Some people pray five times a day and yet are not pure in their hearts and deeds.
“What is the point of going to Mecca three or four times if your own relatives are poor? ,” he said.
Here, folks who lost their homes are sleeping on the ground in tents and cook with firewood.
Marnis Mastimsul from Kampung Tuboh Gadang was busy cooking nasi goreng in batches for her extended family of 70.
They live next door to each other and all their homes were damaged.
Her cousin Patmawati, a mother of six, was breastfeeding her seven-month-old baby in front of her damaged house.
Courtesy: SUNDAY STAR October 4, 2009.
Writer: SHAHANAAZ HABIB.
Photo: SHAHANAAZ HABIB.
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