Friday, September 16, 2016

Way Too Much Rain!!

Our rainy season has been days of no rain and days of torrential rains and days of a gentle drizzle.  However, at the beginning of September on a Tuesday we had a huge rainfall.  Probably more than 9" in 3 or 4 hours.  The result of the large amount of water hitting our soil was the arrival of many mudslides  on the main road to Berlin and on our property.  The ones on our property took out about 30 coffee plants and went across the road at the back of our property.  A smaller slide near the house took out a number of our bananas plants.  Not serious problems for us but it made it difficult for our neighbors who live on the road to go in and out.

This was the largest slide and it took out trees, rocks and even some type of power/phone line.

Not quite so large but still a lot of dirt.

The side of the hill was removed down to rock.

The big problem was the main road that we take to Berlin where  a number of large slides brought down mud, rocks and trees.  The largest of the slides went across the road and kept us housebound from Tuesday until Saturday!  The road crews have been very busy cleaning away the debris and the road is now back to normal if looking a little different.

After being stranded for about 4 days the road was cleared but much of the debris still remained.  It is now all cleared away but driving that particular part of the road is still strange.

Much of the debris was pushed to the steep side of the road which made it a little less scary passing.  One day coming home from San Ramon there was so much mud on the road, I was skidding in 4 wheel drive!  Scary as the road drops off quite steeply!

One of the days we were stranded we decided to try the back way to San Ramon and this is what we encountered.  As the water was moving quite rapidly and there was a drop off on the left side, not to mention we had no idea how deep the water was, we decided to turn back!

This is what our road looks like just before getting to our gate.  It was actually worse but is getting better everyday!  Unless we have some more torrential downpours!

The rain also came with quite a bit of wind and consequently we ended up with some leaks.  Not uncommon in Costa Rica.  It is difficult for us to understand why in a country that rains 6 months out of the year they have not perfected a leak proof roof??  I really like the rainy season because we don't have to water, there is no dust and sometimes it's nice to have an excuse to curl up with a book in the afternoon!  However, I'm really getting tired of having water where it shouldn't be!!

We Are A Work In Progress!

As our title for this blog suggests, we are "A Work in Progress"! Although we are constantly busy working, it seems progress is slow!  Don goes to the garage almost every day and works on the 4 barn doors that we need for our bathrooms.  With no internet available at the house except for my phone, getting his questions answered about how to do things is difficult.  Not to mention finding the necessary supplies that are required.  The first door is now complete and ready to hang as soon as all the necessary hardware is located and purchased!  With tools being stored in NC for 4 years there were some problems, especially with sanders.  Of course, the tool that was needed the most!!  A lot has been done by hand and when they are finished I'm sure Don will be glad to have a rest from that tedious chore, not to mention a rest for his shoulders.

This is the Back Side of the doors that Don has worked so hard to create.

Here is the front side.  Three are complete!  Now to get the hardware together and hang the doors.  We will be using barn door hardware and instead of purchasing a kit, as it is done in the states, Don will be creating much of what we need.

This is where Don creates.  I get to paint and so far have finished the doors, windows and inside.  Once dry season arrives I'll be tackling the outside!

This photo is a bit misleading because the garage, which is beautiful inside, is now full!

A view of the house with our typical cloudy afternoon.


 What can I say?  Another beautiful sunset showing that even cloudy days can end up spectacular!

As I am not much help in creating doors, I have been busy with other projects, one of  which is a daily sweeping of the house.  I try to get outside in the morning to work while the sun is shining, as we are still in the rainy season. The afternoons can be either wet or dry but almost always cloudy or socked in with fog. 

We have had many wonderful friends gift us with beautiful plants and cuttings from their gardens.  I've been hauling topsoil and creating places to plant.  Hopefully, this Saturday the backhoe is going to come and do some major topsoil moving and create a huge flower garden in the center of our circular driveway.  Photos to come.  Below are three very large plants that were a gift.  With our large corridors they are perfect to add to the tropical feel of our home.

Unfortunately, I do not know the names of this plant!  Yesterday we finally cut it in half and put it into two new pots.  Seems to be doing very well so far.

The Fern is really large and we want to make it into three and hang it on the outside of the corridor.  

The Anthurium has also been transferred to two new pots.  The photo doesn't really show how large these plants are.  They are big!

We have planted dozens of Bougainvillea in different colors, lots of Hydrangeas, Ground Covers--not sure the names--, Mango Trees, Peace Lilies and with many more still to plant. 

This little garden was created with Peace Lilies and is between the house and garage.  Our Avocado tree is in the background.

This is our beautiful Avocado tree in bloom.  At the moment we have 3 Avocados and are hoping that all the blossoms mean more to come!

Isn't it beautiful!!

As friends have given me cuttings I have just put them into the ground until I'm sure where we want them to go.  Here are some Salvia, Coleus and a beautiful Purple plant whose name I do not know.

Before we moved to the house we started a compost pile where we took all our food garbage.  From that pile we have created huge squash plants, Papaya Trees, Mango Trees and numerous other gifts that we are enjoying.  We wish to plant grass but need to wait until the beginning of the next rainy season as we were not ready at the beginning of this years season.

Although we still have lots of work to do, the Guest Room is ready for visitors.  There are a couple things that need to be added--a mirror in the bathroom, glass enclosure for the shower, etc. but it has come a long way and is starting to look inviting!  We are hoping someone will be flexible enough to enjoy a visit in our infancy.

We also need some pictures on the walls!  Believe me, we have no shortage of pictures just shortage of time to get them up! :)

Bright, sunny and cozy! Just waiting for our first guest!

A mirror would be nice!

And a shower enclosure!  Hanging on the shower head is a bouquet of Eucalyptus from our tree.

 The scenery and tranquility is as perfect as it will ever be.  The main house is working well and quite cozy with our wood stove for cool mornings, lots of windows to enjoy the view and many wonderful things to eat from town as well as from our own finca.  It's a perfect get away from a hectic life full of demands and lacking free time.  We have hammocks and areas to sit on the large corridor.  To eat, read, enjoy the views of the hills and valleys and the Nicoya Bay and the Pacific or just sit back and let your mind relax and wander!

Bert and Ernie are still our main source of entertainment and growing out of kitten stage into being grown cats.  As "teenagers" they have their moments when they ignore each other or can't get enough of each other.  They keep Don company in the garage or me in the Studio and love to sleep!

Snoozing in the garage!

We find the strangest places to curl up!

Sleeping in my chair!

Checking around outside!  They have both become great hunters for which we are grateful!