Since we have moved here to Los Palomos, we have experienced some crazy weather. We purchased this land in 2014. Actually, we are still making payments to pay it off but the first bulk was paid and we took possession in 2014. What drew us to the land was the privacy, cleanliness being one of the first houses one would encounter coming down the mountain, and the stream of running water that passed by it. In this community, city water only comes through the pipes for about eight hours each week.
We first planted about 14 cacao trees, three of which are left. There was a drought in 2014/2015, I believe it was. It didn't rain for eight months. The nice little stream was dry the entire year. We drove up with buckets of water to water the trees whenever we could, but most didn't make it. We built two houses on the land in 2016. The boys were getting kicked out of their rental and we weren't up for looking for another. It was a team effort. Almost all of the materials were carried on top of Little Blue, my 1987 Toyota. Everyone worked.
In 2016/2017 it rained more than I had seen and more than the elderly people in Puerto Plata said they had ever seen. Now the creek rose so much that it almost reached the boys house. (It wasn't my idea to put their house on the side by the creek but I was overruled). I was scared seeing how close it got to their house. Also, the sound of the rocks rolling down the creek, that quickly converts into a river, is pretty amazing. I can't quite describe how I feel in our little house with five kids being so close to such power and danger. It puts me in awe.
I believe I have pictures in other posts that shows how close the water got to the boys' house. Luckily, Maryville College heard about the flooding and was looking for a place to serve. They came in May through Peacework and built a retaining wall. Whew. I thought we were safe. I didn't think we would see a year with as much rain as last year.
On Thursday night heavy rain began. We've had months of rain. There has been hard rain. The creek has been running probably since November or so. It's great to have the access to water, although it is annoying to have to cross every day to get to the road, as there is no bridge nearby. But Thursday night's rain was apparently stronger than the rest. Never had I seen huge rocks come out of the creek and onto the road. When this creek floods, it flies out into the road and floods all of the city. But the source and the power flows right by our houses. We can hear it and we can feel it.
On Thursday night we had four volunteers traveling from Sosua to the airport in Santiago for a midnight flight. Radame, our bus driver, couldn't get through town as the streets were flooded so much, until pretty much the last available moment, and then they booked it to Santiago. They made it.
When we woke up on Friday morning, we found that about half of the retaining wall was gone. Saturday night we had more flooding, and more rocks hitting and rolling in the creek. On Friday morning I ran to the man's house who built the wall to show him what had happened. It had been less than a year since he built it. His wife reported that he had gone to Chile a few weeks earlier in search of work. So it's back to the drawing board for the retaining wall. I did notice that the cacao tree near the river bed had moved a few feet closer so I think some of these rocks came right off the river bed that was compromised, whereas others came flowing down the river. Here are a few videos:
I don't know what to say. I feel a little desparate before God. I feel trusting but scared as I often do. I want to feel safe and secure, but I think he knows that that would also make me a bit bored. I am constantly amazed by the rich blessings he has given me, but I also long for financial stability. I long for things to feel as though they are under control and in order. Project Esperanza has always had a bit of a chaotic feel to it and people who try to help "get it under control" often suggest that we cut something out but I've never agreed to that.
So I pray to Jehovah God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. I pray to the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. Please take care of us like you always do. You know the things that need to be resolved. You know the details. You know what we need. Please let me see your provisions. Please open the doors. Please send more than enough. Please let us into the Promised Land.
So we're collecting smooth, round, beautiful rocks and painting them like Easter eggs.