House Sitters diary entry #53: It is the rainy season. Last night an incredibly powerful thunder and lightning storm dealt to a transformer and messed with power. This morning had some electricity coming in, but not enough to pump water through the system. I must be judicious about which appliances I use. If I put the kettle on to boil the lights flash like a very budget homemade disco.
Grateful for a backup battery maintaining wifi. I can work. If not, I get penalised (US $10 for every missed lesson)
Went to SuperMarket to get supplies including 12 litres of emergency water. Luckily, I am mostly unfamiliar with the locals as I am somewhat… unwashed. No shower. No toilet.
UPDATE: Hooray! I found a tap in the garden that was routed to a different well. I can haul buckets to flush the toilet (gracias a Dios) and shower sailor-style.
SITREP: status- survivable, mostly comfortable.
My Pretty Turquoise Shower
House sitters diary entry #54: The power situation remains the same. Between power surges and turning off all unnecessary breakers – I got enough water pumped through the system to have a shower. A very bracing, icy cold shower but I have clean hair! Hygiene attended to I can face the public again.
Taking a bus into town 40 minutes away the river is the highest I’ve even seen it. The bridge is covered by surging coffee coloured water. Most vehicles can’t pass. The bus made it through, probably by virtue of creating a massive bow-wave, as the water was up above the top of the wheels.
Taken out of the (dirty) bus window. You can see where the edge of the road is and the water pouring off.
Returning home from town in the afternoon – the entire road has been blocked by men with guns. NOONE is getting across the bridge. Instead of easing during the day, the river level has risen taking out a local roadside restaurant and blocking 2 roads. I must get back home to the dogs. I want to take photos while I figure out what to do. The guard does not want to let me pass -I assure him… I am pretty desperate, but not loco, I will not be diving into the rushing floodwaters! There is another way back to the ranch, it is an hour long diversion and I will have to get back to town to figure out a way there. I begin walking the long, hot 7km. Luckily, a bus comes past. I don’t know where it’s going but figure we have to end up back in town. Bus heads off the main road and winds around the countryside. Beautiful cacti, wooden stick fences, lots of mud. Made it back to town and a bar I know. I need somewhere to wait as I tried to find someone to drive me. I ring 3 drivers before one says he can pick me up… but it won’t be for an hour. Cue -medicinal Mezcal and beer. 3 hours later I am back home to a pair of very happy dogs.
SITREP: Home safe, clean. Water – not hot, but running. Considering planting potatoes.
The bridge I usually cross is completely submerged (left)and the road to the next town is also under water (right)
On the left is a roadside taco stand in the morning… on the right is the same stand under about a 1.5m of floodwater
House sitters diary entry #55:
Another night of window-rattling thunder and 3 hours sitting on the floor with a dog under each arm. This morning there seems to be more power coming in and I can do a load of laundry and turn the freezers back on. I cook lunch for the worker Jose-Manuel as he has been stuck here for 2 days without food from home and there is only one tiny shop with scant provisions -confectionary and soda etc. It is very quiet with big trucks and buses unable to use the road. The worker goes to check the bridge in the afternoon. There is no change. We siphon some petrol from an emergency stash into his truck so he can make it the long way home. I will not be attending Tinder date.
UPDATE: I think it’s gonna be a while. Went down to check water level. Bridge has washed away.
SITREP: Possible emergency situation arising. Wine levels dangerously low, approaching critical.