Tropical Storm Nate: Costa Rica

Hey Everyone,

The last few days have been a hectic few days. As some of you know Costa Rica got hit with a tropical depression turned tropical storm. We got a ton of rain in a short amount of time. It caused all sorts of damage.

On Wednesday, my neighbor and I left the house as usual to go to work. It was raining just like it had rained the morning before so we didn’t think anything out of the ordinary. We get to school and do our normal routine of printing and preparing for the day. It was darker than normal so they turned the lights on in the covered common area. The children show up and we do our morning anthem singing. After the anthem, we go about our day and start teaching. The rain continues which it sometimes does, so again I think nothing different. Around 10:30am, a parent comes in and tells me she is taking her child home and said she won’t be back the next day due to the rain. She said that river before her house is almost unpassable. I saw that other teachers were busy outside which wasn’t normal. I went to ask what was going on. They said we were closing school early due to the flooding and rain. I was unaware of how much rain we actually got so I just told my neighbor to contact our driver to come get us early. I helped my students get their things ready to go home.

All but one of my students left before 11:30. The last students mom was at another school picking up her daughter. She would be here as soon as possible. My neighbor and I got a message saying that our driver cannot pick us up. So we talked with another teacher who goes past our house. She said she could take us home. The problem was that she couldn’t get her car out of the parking lot. Something I didn’t understand until we got to the main gate headed for the main road. When I got to the main gate of school I saw the side road. It was a huge river!! I mean massive. No cars could use the road. (see videos below) We walked down the school parking lot and come to another “river” that we had to pass in order to get to the person picking us up. Five of us linked arms and crossed the river (see video below). We got to the car and headed for our house. The roads were flooded and scary. As soon as I got home I filled buckets with water and got my flash lights ready. I knew the power would be going out soon.

I had a friend coming to visit as well. He was on a bus from San Jose. The power went off about 30 minutes after I got home. Since the power went out here, I had no internet and my Costa Rican cell service wasn’t working. I had to turn my US phone off airplane mode so I could get service to contact him and see where he was. He got stuck about an hour from here because of the water on a bridge. They had to reroute. He made it here about 2 hours later. Since he didn’t have cell service he couldn’t contact me to come outside. He had to use a picture I sent him the day before in the pitch black to find the gate to my apartment. He finally found it which was great! The rain hasn’t stopped. It has slowed tremendously though. The town closest to me, Brasilito, didn’t have much damage. The power came back on for us yesterday evening.

Today I went to Tamarindo just for a few hours to get a bite to eat and show my friend the area. They didn’t have power and trees were still falling. The water level had gone down a lot. Yet some places still have water that isn’t draining.IMG_6638

On the way back from Tamarindo a tree had fallen in the road. We couldn’t pass by car. So, we got out, walked around it, and got another ride on the other side. It has been a bit crazy. So many people are with out power and some are stranded. They are doing rescue missions by boat for people. It is a mess. I am going to try to link up with my church to go help people in any way I can.

On the plus side, I was able to get some plants for my apartment on the way back from Tamarindo! Please, send Costa Rica and all that are being hit by the tropical storm love and energy for a quick recovery. Most people here have a lot of loss and damage.

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