Tuesday, 6 July 2010

This has been some strange time

     This has been some strange time.   My father-in-law is a bit improved, but still very far from his previous active self.   My mother-in-law is pleasantly exhausted....spending 14 to 22 hours per day at the hospital at her husband's side.    My wife goes about her business, working 10 hours a day, and then spending another 10 hours a day attending to her mother's loose ends, helping her father in the hospital.    I have been very helpful to the overall effort, contributing 1/10 of 1 per cent to the overall effort.   At least my wife has four hours left over every day to wait on me hand and foot.....which is only right or the Good Lord would not have put 25 hours in every day.
     We went through a bit of a "near miss" from Hurricane Alex...still receiving from 18 inches of rain (eastern, coastal sections) to around 12 inches overall here in the middle of the Magic Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas.    Up against the Sierra Madre Oriental, from near Cd. Victoria to well north of the Monterrey metroplex....say up to Eagle Pass and Del Rio....rains of 25 to 50 inches have been recorded since the arrival of Hurreicane Alex on the coast of Tamaulipas back on the 3rd of July.    The Monterrey metroplex is a mess.   It is a shame because it is a place that rises up out of its own disorder, always improving.   The Gobernador of Nuevo Leon says that there might be a billion dollars of damage just in the metroplex (a contiguous arrangement of 4,000,000 people in 7 different cities and/or counties).     Some reasonable and conservative type people have stated that it might be more like 5 billion dollars worth of damage.   Incredibly, only 15 people are known to be dead.   For those familiar with the matter, this rain and storm event has proven to be much, much worse than Hurricane Gilbert in 1988, or Beulah in September of 1967.    Those are benchmark disasters, now eclipsed by Alex.
     It is well to point out that the Monterrey metroplex is essentially an assembly of fairly good to quite excellent construction and public facility.   It has long been the largest metropolitan area in Latin America where one could drink the water from the tap without concern...(since about 1896)...for instance.

     Our treasured Quinta Tesoro de la Sierra Madre, nestled by the cypress-lined Rio Corona....watched warily as the water approached her walls.   The final line of advance came to almost the same point as had the run-off from Hurricane Beulah in September of 1967.   While I was not there at the time, our friend and neighbour who is the owner of the Hacienda de la Vega next door was there and kept us informed of the inch-by-inch progress of the floods.   Neither their place nor ours was damaged after the arrival of the runoff of what was finally 63 inches of rain over four days at the 4,000 foot level of the Sierra, four miles to our east.   This rainfall was fairly common throughout the face of the various cordilleras of the Sierra Madre Oriental during the Hurricane Alex period. 

     Oddly, we had only a few hours of electrical service interruption , and apparently there were no leaks from any part of the roof.   Small but significant victories.

More later.
The Old Gringo