Friday, August 31, 2007

When it rains, it pours

During the wet season, rain in the central valley of Costa Rica is nearly a daily event. We wake to gorgeous, sunny mornings with birds serenading us just outside our windows and palm trees reaching to bright blue skies. Then around lunchtime from our home in Santa Ana we can see the clouds start rolling in and down the mountains, knowing it's just a short time until the rains reach us here. Sometimes the rain is soft (como pelo de gato—like a cat's fur), but lately it has been pounding, accompanied by large bolts of lightning and booming thunder that shakes the valley.

Even some Ticos have told us that this year's downpours are more intense than usual. Last week it rained so hard that I had to pull over from driving down the mountain because visibility was nearly zero. Once the rain let up enough to resume driving, I made it home (nearly jumping out of my seat once at a huge clap of thunder and driving through some big puddles, nothing too deep). It was truly a gullywasher.

When I finally got home from my white-knuckled ride, I told Dan
(with plenty of drama, to be sure) how bad roads were. Shortly after, he drove to the gate to watch for the girls' bus to bring them back from their second day of school. What he found was an SUV caught in the underpass with water nearly up to the top. The driver escaped through his sun roof while others (including the kids on the bus) were stranded, watching.

Some people worked to unclog a large sewer drain and eventually to pull the SUV out of the area. Dan said when they opened the SUV door it was like a movie, with water gushing from the vehicle. Apparently all that was missing to complete the drama were a few fish to flop out of the car as well.

I love listening to the rain at night. I love seeing the lush green mountains in the morning. I just don't want to find myself stranded in my car with a few fish swimming around for company.

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