Monday, June 4, 2007

Brown lawns?....Hurricane Season

Just in case there was a doubt, Summer is here! As June knocked on our door, Tropical Storm BARRY came calling. Of course we needed the rain. Our lawns were looking awful and our gardens were dying, right? Well, after living in Curaçao for 20 plus years, that doesn't really bother me. I am a firm believer that we should plant what grows in the area, keep the indigenous flora intact. Why fool with Mother Nature with anything else? In Curacao I had bougainvillea, hibiscus, frangipani and aloes in my garden. Here we do plant anything we like, so we need LOTS of water. Personally, I want it to rain over Lake Okeechobee, that's where we need it. Water for our daily life! Anyway, I seem to be alone in this.

When I moved to Curaçao, everyone told me that it never rained there. Famous last words, because when it rained, it rained cats and dogs. I remember one year, a tropical storm passed through the island. High winds and torrential rains made a mess of everything. Streets flooded and there are no draining systems on the roads. School was out for two weeks and there were pools of water all over the countryside. On Christoffelberg, the highest point on the island, a small waterfall sprung and lasted for a while. It became a must-visit site for all of us.

When the rains ceased, and the sun came out for more than a couple of hours a day, we were left with a big problem...... the pools of water became a breeding ground for mosquitoes. The Health Department became very worried about dengue fever and other illnesses that this could bring. So, we got guppies! Really, that was the solution: the guppies would eat the larvae, and bye mosquitoes. Isn't that fantastic and environmentally sound? I miss that ingenuity!

Mostly I miss the fact that hurricanes avoid my corner of the Tropics! Rain I can cope with; high winds, crashing waves and mass destruction, don't do anything for me. So one more time since I move to Miami, I am wishing for a mild season!

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