December 26, 2006

Tropical Storm

A tropical rainstorm uprooted this papaya tree

Apparently the rainstorm was worse than we knew. We've been watching the Honduras channels on TV. They say that the highway from La Ceiba was cut off from San Pedro Sula, where almost all of our food and supplies come from. It must be clear now because we received the newspaper today at 2:00 p.m.; it comes from San Pedro, too, but usually at 7:00 a.m.

Yesterday's newspaper reported that this was the 24th frente frio (cold front) of this season. (Hmmm, I only remember two other cold fronts, October 30 and November 22.) They predicted rain of up to 1 meter (3.3 feet) in the next 48 hours and up to 2 meters (6.6 feet) in the next 72 hours. Winds of up to 50 km. per hour (31 miles per hour) were expected. High and low temperatures for La Ceiba today are predicted to be 13 to 20°C (55 to 68°F), gradually getting back to normal (mid-80's F/28-30°C) by Friday.

They reported that the areas beyond La Ceiba have no electricity. Parts of La Ceiba have no water. Some of the bridges have been damaged. The main bridge that we take to town is in danger of collapsing, they say. The water level has reached the level of the main north coast highway on both sides and at some points, the highway is under water.

An overflowing river in Sambo Creek not far from here claimed the lives of a father and his 14-year-old daughter. The mother was rescued but is in poor condition.

One rancher lost 40 head of cattle who drowned. Other cattle are roaming the highway because it is the only high ground in some areas. Many acres of crops have been destroyed. The reporters interviewed some very sad farmers.

We saw film of some of the very same areas that I took photos of on
our trip to Tela. This banana plantation is now under water and the banana plants are uprooted and laying all over the place. The water is up to the level of this part of the highway on both sides. Sorry I can't give you on-the-scene photos, but use your imagination.

Our internet and cable were out this morning but have been repaired. The power has been off four times since last night. We haven't had any problem with our water supply since it comes from a well instead of from the city.

We had a little damage to our garden. Nothing much to speak of but here are some photos:

These three papaya trees were old and not producing good fruit so they are no loss. You can see by the curved trunks that two of them were already leaning. We needed to cut them down anyway. The photo at left is a side view of the papaya tree at the top of the article.

This photo is the Etlingera that El Jefe macheted. Oops, the rain pouring off the roof knocked down some more branches. There are only four tall stems left. Luckily, it will grow back quickly.

The metal support holding my Allamanda also fell over because the plant was so top heavy but I don't think it damaged the plant.

The pink Etlingera, in this photo, was damaged, too. Now we won't need to machete that one − just tidy it up a bit.

Right now it is starting to rain again. Time to go mop the floors and quit complaining about our windows. It could be a lot worse and I'm thankful that we have only suffered minor annoyances.
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