Today it is raining. Yesterday it was raining too. That is about all it takes here before there is a flood. Lots and lots of rain. Mind you, that is all it takes in most places for it to flood. Most floods are quick and small, and they disappear as fast as they came. This one was no different, although it still has not stopped raining.
Fortuanately for us, there is no serious problem for our base and buildings, as we have made many changes to the place now and our flood wall, the newest addition, worked very effectively. However, our neighbour suffered considerably, and had to punch holes in the wall of his house to let out the water that had flooded it.
Cautious from the damage I had caused to my last camera when taking photos in the rain (the LCD screen died), I went out with an umbrella to protect my gear and then took a bunch of photos to try and give an impression of what we were experiencing. The locals tell me that this is the worst they have ever seen it.
Our dirt road was carved up in some large washouts, the sewerage system was overflowing onto the streets, the drain storms were inundated, and parts of the street were completely covered in water. It was very impressive to see the power of nature in effect.
In spite of all of this, people continued to go about their daily business. Shop owners found a way to collect the bread they need every day, buses still rolled down the road, albeit slowing down for each of the deeper water holes and the washouts, and there were people to get on and off the buses. It was business as usual.
Well, not quite. Our new kindergarten was empty today when not one child turned up due to the heavy rains and localised flooding – a rare situation indeed. Compared to dry days or even normal wet days the number of people outside was cut down to the bare minimum. It was a bleak and rainy day. The students also, simply stood out on the back patio and looked through the sheets of rain out over the waters. There was not much more they could do.
But, just as fast as it arrived, when the rain stopped, it was almost all gone again within a few hours, leaving a mushy and muddy ground for the next day or two as it dries. As I write this tonight it is raining again, although lightly. If we get some more heavy rain then the waters could easily rise again quickly over the already saturated land, although it is unlikely. It was large thunderstorms that brought this huge flood last night and this morning. Now they are only rain clouds.
So although we are wet and drying out, all is well in this part of the world, and we are in a good situation. Only six months ago things would have been very different, but we are making good progress on establishing this base and fixing up the most significant areas of need.
Enjoy the photos that follow. Rob.