CHENNAI: If the first spell of heavy rainfall, brought out Chennai’s fighting spirit, the second, heavier, one on Tuesday highlighted the city’s kindness. As volunteers will attest, across the city, in the worst affected of places, people opened their doors to their neighbours, sharing space, food and limited resources. As water levels rose, people in apartments moved in with neighbours above as lower floors filled up. Landlords and ladies, opened their homes to tenants. In Korattur the landlady stayed back to provide for her tenants’ families while her own family was evacuated, while in Kilpauk, the tenant opened her doors to her landlady and two cats in the middle of the night, as water entered the ground floor.
In Kodambakkam, a resident caring for her father, unconscious with a brain injury, needed a manual suction pump for tracheostomy or a generator to run equipment when the power was cut. Despite the late hour, and rain, few volunteer-operated relief teams got the message on to Twitter where users like @AbuCric and @tw_bhav got into the act through the wee hours of Wednesday morning. A generator finally was transported across, demonstrating the power of social media.