by Fred Lawson Gunn
Dateline: February 15, 2020
Taal Volcano has settled down quite a bit in the last week especially. Just yesterday the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology officially lowered the Alert Level from #3 down to #2! Ever since the eruption I have been gathering the healing intentions of everyone around the volcano and focusing them through our orgone energy device which has been pointed directly at the main crater, also communing daily with Taal and Lalahon. Not to mention driving down to the lake as soon as the barricades were removed and “gifting” the waters with orgone energy devices. The calming down may also be a completely natural process, but from observing nature while focusing intentions and communing, my instincts tell me that we have had a helping positive effect. Whatever works, I always say.
Dateline: February 8, 2020
Have been monitoring every day the official status of Taal Volcano through Phivolcs website and Alert Level 3 is still in effect due to magma flows under the surface of the island and earthquake activity. Small plumes of steam arise all day and night as well, indicating to me that Taal is happy to continue my suggestion to “release pressure gradually over time“. Every morning I greet Taal and Lalahon when I greet the Sun and I thank them for their communion with us. Each night when securing the house I again greet Taal, Lalahon and the Moon (whether visible yet or not) and give thanks again.
Christie, Dillon and I drove down Ligaya Drive to the town of Talisay today and there are now people and traffic around, unlike on January 28th when the barricades had just been removed and Talisay was still a ghost town like Tagaytay was the first few days after the eruption. There are also hundreds of sacks of volcanic ash lining both sides of the roads in Talisay as a result of the clean up process. On the way back up the inside of the caldera going home we stopped at the “look out” point and took some pictures with the Sun fully lighting up Taal island, the landscape has certainly changed from what we had become used to. Still slippery going back up Ligaya Drive which has not yet been cleared of ash, and there was a drizzle of rain, but our truck made it no problemo.
Dateline: January 28, 2020
The barricades on both lake-drive roads have been removed with the lowering of the alert level from 4 down to 3, so I gathered up some gifting orgone energy devices and drove down to the lake’s edge. Talisay still looks like Tagaytay City did 2 weeks ago..a ghost town. I found a place between two buildings where I could walk down to the lake’s edge, followed by some hungry chickens and geese, and tossed the orgone gifts into the waters of lake Taal. This was the first opportunity to drive all the way down, I was happy to be that close to Taal Volcano again, there is a connection we have which I will always cherish.
Dateline: January 27, 2020
The compassion we have seen everywhere during this event has been heart warming, everyone helping everyone else in adversity. And it was this spirit of others surrounding Taal whom I included in my own intentions, a big boost when communing with Lalahon and Taal. I could feel everyone’s energy and I knew that she had found balance. Part of my intentions was asking Taal to seek release below ground. Using Remote Viewing protocols a correspondence was engaged, and the response I received from Taal was that ‘there should be some ancient magma chambers, empty and waiting to be refilled.‘ This was between the 22nd and 24th and that is when things really began to calm down from our perspective up here on the northern ridge of Taal caldera.
Dateline: January 26, 2020
Couldn’t sleep well last night, woke up around 5:00am and had some herbal tea to help relax. Not long after that I saw light through the living room window and knew the sunrise was beginning and that I could get a fresh view of Taal Volcano. Indeed she was still venting steam in a gradual manner as I had suggested last week on the 21st. The sunrise consisted of bright orange crepuscular rays and a partly cloudy sky, with Taal venting steam in the foreground, absolutely breathtaking! I communed spiritually again with Taal through Lalahon (in Hawaii she is “Pele”) thanking her for accepting my request to gradually release pressure until she is comfortable again, then I was able to get back to sleep. Hours later upon awakening our son advised, with a grin on his face, that Phivolcs has lowered the alert level from 4 down to 3 now. I went outside on our balcony to say thanks again to Gaia/Lalahon/Taal 🙂
Dateline: January 25, 2020
The other “lake-drive” road which goes from Tagaytay City down to Taal Lake is called Ligaya (=Happiness) Drive. We live on a small road which branches off near the top of Ligaya Drive. Since yesterday there has been a police barricade in place with both policemen and national guards ensuring the security of the lockdown. Residents of our road are of course free to enter and leave, and I have been smiling and waving at them each time I drove in and out, but no one is allowed “down” Ligaya Drive, just like the other lake-drive road, Talisay Road which goes down from the rotunda near Olivares Plaza. Then today I drove out to get more washing water from a neighbor who has a deep well on his property, and upon return one of the national guardsmen stopped me and asked who I was, in English, while a policeman stood by inspecting my cargo (water containers) in the back of my pickup truck. He was very friendly, and just curious I’m sure, I introduced myself and that I am a resident on this road, just picking up our daily water supply. We chatted a bit more, then he shook my hand and said “Nice to meet you, sir”. I returned his kind greeting and thanked him and the policeman for keeping us safe, doing their duty.
Dateline: January 24, 2020
Have been communing the last few days with Lalahon (Visayas volcanic deity) asking her to release pressure more gradually over time instead of explosive events. She seems to have agreed as this morning she began releasing steam clouds again…NOT an eruption. When in touch with Lalahon I got a sense of ancient magma chambers which are hollow and close by under the island into which excessive magma buildup could be discharged instead of directing it upwards. Before the lake-drive roads were totally closed off I was able to get down a few miles closer to the lake and gift the jungle areas with orgone energy devices, letting Lalahon know that she is welcome to use their crystal/orgone energies to find a natural balance conducive to the lifeforms surrounding her. More news as it develops.
Dateline: January 22, 2020
The eruption on January 12th stopped in less than 48 hours but then for days it had been steaming a bit, then the last couple of days there has been no visible activity other than high winds blowing the dried ash everywhere. But drones and scientific monitoring equipment are indicating Taal may be storing up energy for a big blast! Due to heavy magma movement underground, earthquake intensities and the fact that the whole island is slightly tilted, indicates a possible bigger eruption could be coming. Level 4, intensitity 5 (highest) is still in effect, some lower barangays of Tagaytay are now under “mandatory evacuation”, we’re OK up here above 2k feet from short term effects of a massive explosion, but should that happen we are ready to “bug out” at a moments notice down to Dasmarinas to a family residence.
When I say the island is tilted, parts of the northeastern shore are under water, including probably some houses nearby while the opposite side is rising up. You can read more about it here.
Wanted to drive down to the lake but there is a barricade stating “Road Closed” and two national guard soldiers guarding the entrance to the road. I was hoping that conditions were OK to get down to the lake so that I could put some orgone muffins in there, it helped last time Taal tried to erupt.
January 12, 2020
Day 1: Taal Volcano Awakens After Over 40 Years Of Simmering
Around 3:00pm on my wife and I were driving our friend Cherry from our home overlooking Taal Volcano to the mall in downtown Tagaytay City to meet up with her son. Just after leaving the house we noticed more than a dozen people were walking towards us on our road and seemed to be interested in something down below the ridgeline of Taal’s caldera. We didn’t think much about it and continued on but as we drove on more and more people were starting to converge on the ridge side of the road, so we found a place to stop to see if we could discover what everyone was looking at, and sure enough Taal Volcano was erupting! Our son had been telling us earlier that he was feeling the ground shaking, before the actual eruption.
There were some heavy storm clouds directly over Taal Volcano and some steam was apparently rising from the main crater. I took some pictures…
…and video and decided that this could be just a minor eruption, and our friend was anxious to meet with her son so we continued on our way, intending on keeping a lookout on the activity down below at the lake. Traffic was heavy as usual for a Sunday, but we finally dropped our friend off and decided to hurry back to our house because our son was home alone, but with our two dogs.
Rain was just starting and had some muddy coloration to it…
…Traffic was now getting heavier than usual, so we took the shortcut. Turned out it was just as heavy traffic, and the rain now had some debris in it that we could only identify as volcanic ash. And we were seeing vehicles coming from the opposite direction already with ash covering them so we knew something major could be happening.
After trying to contact our
son by cell phone, while stuck in traffic, his phone was
“unattended”, which began to worry us. But then a few minutes later I
received a text message from him saying “OMG, Taal is erupting!” That’s what we had been texting him.
He then let us know that “coal is
raining on the roof! should I evacuate?” We advised we were on the way
home in heavy traffic, to close all windows, lock the doors and remain inside,
that he and the dogs would be safe.
Thirty minutes later we arrived home and were amazed at the spectacle before us. And with ringside seats, too!
The rest of the afternoon we
all used our cameras and captured as many pictures and videos that we could to
document what we felt had to be an historic eruption. The electrical power had
already shut off so we could not charge the batteries.
Then besides ash mixed with rain, we were getting pebbles and then the occasional rocks falling from the sky about an inch in diameter.
This was just before dark and the ash was getting thicker and thicker on the ground. Our son had been monitoring the news and right after dark he told us that people are commenting online that it might be a good idea to leave Tagaytay City while you still could. This was good advice.
As quickly as we could, using flashlights, we gathered up spare clothing, removed food that would spoil from the fridge, contacted my brother-in-law to make sure we had a place to evacuate to (he said “come on down”), grabbed my fireproof “Brinks Home Security” safe with all of our important documents inside, put it all in the SUV and all piled in with the dogs to evacuate.
It wasn’t long before I
realized the windshield wipers were ineffective against the onslaught of
raining volcanic ash. Our goal was to move away from the volcano as quickly as
possible so as to get out of the main ash fall area, but that was everyone
else’s idea as well. Lots of other evacuees!
The only way I could drive was to open the driver’s window, put on my eyeglasses for eye protection from the ash, lean my head outside the window and follow the car in front of us.
Our son kept a watch out the passenger’s side window to guide me and keep me advised of what was on that side of our vehicle. After about 45 minutes on back roads heading towards the highway which leaves Tagaytay City and goes down the mountain, we finally connected with the highway but still in bumper to bumper traffic.
Meanwhile I was getting quite a thick mat of ash in my hair, but they say it has healing properties so I was unconcerned. My wife, son and our dogs were all remaining calm inside the vehicle, giving me more confidence that we would successfully arrive at my brother-in-law’s house within an hour or more. As we slowly proceeded down the highway, over a period of an hour, the ash fall lessened a bit, but I still could not use the vehicle wipers. Fortunately the Filipinos are prepared for such an emergency we discovered, as there were volunteers along the sides of the roads who had brought out big buckets of water from their homes fronting the highway and were tossing the water on passing windshields from dippers in their hands. At this point I could see through the windshield finally, but it did not last long. Within a minute or so my head was back out the window so I could navigate safely. Then a few minutes later, more water gets thrown on our windshield, a few minutes of visibility, then head back outside again. This went on for about 30 more minutes until the ash was not as thick and a few dippers of water thrown on my windshield lasted about 5 minutes.
Eventually we safely arrived at our destination and were welcomed inside for a well-deserved rest and recuperation. I spent a few minutes outside first with the water hose and rinsed my hair, face and upper body which was thickly coated with ash.
That night we watched the local news channels to keep up with the eruption until we couldn’t hold back the sleep anymore and went to bed for a well-deserved night’s rest.
Day 2: Can We Go Home Yet?
The news was not detailed
enough to provide us with information on whether or not we could get back home yet.
Our son reported that on his cell phone he had news that some people still in
Tagaytay City were wanting to evacuate but the ash was too thick to drive! I
texted a friend who lives in a condominium about 15 minutes south of Tagaytay
City and he said that the roads were clear. So maybe the news was old, and we
decided around 2:00pm that we should go ahead and drive back up to Tagaytay
City on the highway and if it becomes impassible, then we would just return
back down to Dasmariñas. We
traded the SUV for a truck and departed with hopes, and when we got to our
friend’s condominium area the roads were indeed passable including all the way up
to our house. We knew there would be ash everywhere, and even though we could
drive with our truck on the roads the ash was about an inch thick. About 4:00pm
we arrived at our home, the big white double front gate was now coated in dark
gray ash, already hardening from the sunshine. However, it was difficult to get
the gate open because the latch mechanism on the inside, when reaching through
to operate it, was frozen due to the thick dried ash. It took several good whacks
and shakes to remove the dried ash and get the lever moving so that we could
open the gate.
Inside the gate, on our driveway was like a scene from a horror movie.
Our once beautiful bougainvillea
bushes were completely coated in ash, the weight of the ash having pulled the
branches all the way down to the driveway level, making it impassible so we
parked at the top. Nothing but dark grayness everywhere! The roof totally
covered, most of the sides of the formerly white house also covered in
As we cautiously made our way through the thorny ash covered bougainvillea down to the garage entrance we found the back yard grass was no longer visible, all covered in ash, and every plant, tree, bush, etc.
The only plant that was not
affected in this way was our 100′ tall Cook’s Pine tree, and there is a small
circle of green grass directly underneath the tree’s lowest branches.
A little round haven of what used to be.
Taal volcano was still belching smoke, but no more ash falling thankfully. Knowing that the clean-up was going to take weeks, we thought to just stay at home, even without power, and evaluate the work that would need to be done ahead of us. We broke out the emergency candles and actually spent a pleasant night sitting and chatting together as a family in the living room, the dogs keeping our spirits high. It was amazing how quiet everything was, compared to what we were used to before the eruption. From outside at night we could not see anyone with lights on for miles and miles around us. And the feeling of not having any electromagnetic frequencies invading our space was such a breath of fresh air, so to speak. A bit spooky though, I have to admit. Needless to say we slept early, totally exhausted, happy to be alive and well, but also totally in awe of Mother Nature’s awesome power!
Day 3: Survival Mode Engaged
Early in the morning, even though I was deep asleep I was suddenly awakened due to the house shaking to and fro, several repetitions. An earthquake, strong one! It only lasted about 5 seconds and then back to the silence around us. I remembered that this was not a dream, it actually happened. But we were safe and sound, unlike others less fortunate. The weather was clear, scattered clouds but mostly bright hot sunshine, the ash everywhere now hardened. But as vehicles pass on the roads, the dust clouds begin to form. Next on our agenda, get dust masks! Still no electricity, but we have some water in our tanks. Our son found the energy to take the machete and start cutting back the bougainvillea and hauling the branches down to the back yard to dry out, becoming more firewood. These plants are very sturdy, they will sprout again and blossom over time. My wife had some pending orders from a local distributor, so during the day she continued her production in our garage. I drove around town to see if any stores were open even with the power outage. Turned out that only the 7-11 stores with backup generators were partially operating. Lines of people were waiting to charge their cell phones as the charging station was operable with the generator running. Over the next couple of days though, that stopped.
Next I visited the power company but they were closed, and no notice on the front door about estimated restoration. I came back home, picked up our Styrofoam cooler and drove 25 miles down the mountain to the closest town with full power and purchased some ice from a convenience store. Then stocked up on food supplies at the grocery and headed back up to Tagaytay City. When I got home I set up the cooler as our refrigerator and got busy making lunch for everyone.
As the day wore on, and the Sun went down, we decided just to lock the house up again and go sleep at my brother-in-law’s house again and watch the news.
Days 4-5-6: How Much Longer Without Power?
During daylight hours we stayed in Tagaytay City and did what we could at home to clean up, work on orders, and find out information we needed. At night we would sleep down in Dasmariñas. Taal Volcano was continuing to belch smoke, but not so threateningly as the first couple of days. When driving around in Tagaytay City I noticed the electrical company had dispatched dozens and dozens of repair trucks everywhere in the city, so I stopped and talked to someone who seemed to be a superintendent. He told me that power could be restored in the next few days. Hmmm, well at least it wasn’t “the next few weeks”. Our son had witnessed the electrical power lines on the first day of eruption sparking and smoking during the initial ash fall. The superintendent of the power company told me that there are metallic particles contained in the ash and it reacts with the power lines causing sparks and sometimes explosions. On the 5th day the commercial areas of Tagaytay City finally got power. On the 6th day we still had no power in our residential area, but the repair trucks were on our road and I talked to a lineman who said “maybe tomorrow“. My experience with utility companies here has been that they like to under promise and over deliver. This turned out to be the case here because our power was restored that night.
Days 7-8: Recovery
It is just a matter of time now before everyone living around Taal Volcano will get back to a “normal” life. However, lots of towns nearby are still in full lockdown, no one allowed to go home yet. We are very fortunate. Over the last few days we have been communing mentally and spiritually with Taal, asking that she continue to release any pressure but at a slower rate, instead of all at once. The earthquakes have slowed, the steam plumes have lessened, but there is still a Level 4, Intensity 5 alert status for Taal Volcano. This means she may not yet be finished. I feel that she is done, for now.
Now that you have read our story, experience the video. It is more clear watching on YouTube itself. Thanks for watching 🙂