Tuesday, May 18, 2010
After the Rains
The Diario del Yucatán reports we had up to 90 mm of rain (3.5 inches) in that one or two hour downpour. The entire city flooded. The centro was a disorganized mess; the buses moved a lot of water, making the waves that entered the houses practically surfable. My friend told me Garcia Generes was inundated like he'd never seen before. He watched guys pushing stalled cars, but the cars were floating and going with the current instead of the intended direction.
For a good story about the rain, check out this post: Where's Noah When You Need Him?
I may have been wondering if the friends on the corner took in water due to waves generated by the cross streets. But they have pretty good protectors....and their boat may have held tight.....However, there are other folks whose houses were on my mind when the rains came. I am not sure if you read my post about architects, but the gist of it was that I don't have much confidence in a couple of the TRENDY ones about town.
I have a friend whose house has a roofless dining room. Not a cupula or light colored glass, just a big 6x6 ft square (I am guessing and probably exaggerating the size) hole in the ceiling/roof. The idea was to allow air flow through the house, since it is long, narrow and has no windows except for the two small rooms facing the street and the kitchen facing the patio. A good number of the houses in the centro are attached at the walls. They were built a foot thick to keep out Merida's intense heat. I ask myself, did the architect forget about the tropical rains when he designed the roofless dining room? Or was he new in town and not know about the three month rainy season? The floor in that room is gravel with tiles laid on top....but could it withstand four inches of rain in an hour? I have this picture in my mind of water oozing out in all directions, but maybe I got that picture from the oozing I saw at my own house! Then I remembered all the fruit trees in her patio....picturing piles of guavas on the ground and leaves of all kinds everywhere. We got lucky with the leaves: the mamey dropped the last of its leaves last week. Our back patio doesn't look too war torn. The good news about my friend's house is that her street didn't flood, so at least she didn't have to fight water coming in from the front.
There is a wet weather front west of us in the Gulf of Mexico, and some instability on the Caribbean side of the peninsula. They are predicting 50% chance of rain every day for the rest of the week. For Saturday night the projected "heat index" is 56°C. 132.8°F. I am hoping that is a misprint.
I am constantly amazed how life can change from one day to the next. This was just a rainstorm, with no major damage done, but for me it was a wake up call for the upcoming hurricane season and a reminder about how quirky life can be. Mother Nature is on a rampage it seems, so it is time to beef up the hurricane kit.