On Sunday I was upset that the perfect lunch I had ordered from the Chinese restaurant near our place, Golden Crown, did not arrive on time.

One half order of buttered chicken, two orders of beef with broccoli, and a single serving of sweet and sour fish plus just one cup of Yang Chow rice (everybody is on brown rice these days) -- all for just under P500.

It was supposed to be really simple yet really special because the small kids Sophia and Elmo both had good grades for the second quarter and both ranked fifth (well, Elmo was tied with another student) in their respective classes. Elmo is again the recipient of both the Deportment and the Penmanship awards.

In the first quarter, Sophie was sixth and Elmo seventh.

I had called the restaurant at 10:15 to place the order so that our helper could pick it up at 11. Elmo had violin classes at his teacher's house in QC at 1:30 so I figured everything would be perfectly timed. The five of us would have plenty of time to partake of the meal, even for tea afterwards, and then to get ready for the rest of the day.

But 12 noon came and the food still wasn't there and the helper was not picking up her phone and everybody was running late and hungry.

I could feel the blood rushing to my ears -- that's how it is when I am upset, and my perfectly planned schedule running off course was exactly the sort of thing that would upset me.

And then I remembered all the people who were battered by Yolanda (Haiyan), how they lost loved ones, or still haven't heard from them, saw their homes get flooded and blown away, they who were now crammed in evacuation centers without food, water, sanitation facilities and the certainty of when everything would go back to normal -- if they ever will.

And I felt ashamed. So ashamed of myself.