Archive for the ‘storm’ tag
It’s the middle of summer here in Buenos Aires, and we seem to be situated under some sort of monster rainstorm system. I’m racking my brain trying to remember ever witnessing a storm as fierce as last night’s, but nothing comes to mind.
It started yesterday early evening. When I left home around 6:30 p.m. the sky looked ominous. Mid-way through my bus ride to Las Cañitas, torrential rain began to fall in thick sheets. I giggled as I recalled teaching an Argentine friend the phrase “It’s raining cats and dogs” last week. (The Argentine version is a bit uncouth.)
I hopped off the bus at my stop and ran towards cover, laughing with others who had run towards the same small space. In those 3 or 4 exposed seconds, I managed to get full-body soaked. From our [semi] dry spot, we watched the rain pour into the streets. The wind roared and thunder literally shook the windows. Within a half hour the rain hadn’t let up even a smidge and the street was completely flooded. Garbage bags began floating down the street. I could no longer see car tires. The water was rising fast, and people were drenched. Nonetheless, many well-dressed porteños continued along on their evening commute. On the other side of the street, a woman in high heels and a tight white skirt trudged through water up to her thighs. Yes, her thighs.
Apparently this happens a few times each year. The drainage system isn’t equipped to handle such fierce and heavy rain, and there are many flood zones in the city. I didn’t know it from my dry little space, but many stores and apartments were being flooded.
Tonight, after a perfectly sunny day, the same thing happened just as I was to go meet some friends for dinner. They texted to tell me they were still going to make it, so I grabbed my umbrella and headed to the street to hail a cab.
On the corner, a cabbie was dropping someone off, so I waved and asked if I could hop in. He quickly replied no, to which I cursed him under my breath and continued down the street, water up to my mid-calf. About 10 seconds later I saw him slow down and wait for me. It seemed he’d taken pity on me and decided not to be a jerk.
By some sort of freakish gift from the gods, a spanish version of Toni Braxton’s “Unbreak my Heart” was on the radio when I got in. I am not sure I’d heard that song since 7th grade, but I still knew Toni’s every word. Drunk off the chaos unleashed by mama nature and drowned out by the sounds of the storm, I began to hum the song in the back of the cab. The driver told me he loved the song, too, and turned up the volume.