Hurricane First World Problems

This weeks blog offering is late. It is late because I am trapped in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Manuel (TSM). Actually it’s late because TSM and Hurricane Ingrid are having a domestic and battling it out to see who can cause more damage in Mexico. It’s a twisted relationship they have. And I’m sure because we aren’t involved in a twisted relationship you’ll forgive me for being late.
It has been an interesting and humbling experience to be on the fringes of disaster. I’m counting my blessings right now. I am so lucky. I am still alive. I am safe. I have a roof over my head. Others aren’t so lucky. Watching the news it is heartbreaking to learn that 60 people are dead and hundreds more have lost their homes as everything they own has been washed away. Walking around this costal resort we can see the devastation. The once pretty beach is littered with rubbish, trees have been blown down and some beach front restaurants have been washed out to sea.
In light of this I refuse to moan about how inconvenient this is for me. I refuse to let the thoughts enter my head. I don’t care if I’m wearing the same teeshirt three days in a row. I don’t care if I’ve run out of conditioner or that for several days Internet access was down. These things are minor first world bullshit problems. This is not a problem. It is a minor irritation. Having to abandon your car because the river swelled and washed away your camp site – that’s a problem. Having to be airlifted from your holiday resort because the roads are closed cos the bridge is washed away – that’s a problem. Having everything you own being destroyed by a mud slide – that’s a problem. I’ve talked to people this week that these things have happened to. Running out of antihistamine tablets while having an overload of mozzie bites, well that’s barely an interesting anecdote.
This has been such an experience and I’ve realised lots about myself.
I am not a moaner. I’m not a crier either. I am practical and rational. We should have been home yesterday. We may not get home til the end of the week. There is absolutely nothing I can do to change these facts. The roads are closed. A bridge needs rebuilt. I cannot help. All I can do is to keep my head calm and my wits about me. There’s no point freaking out. This will not help.
I’m travelling with a group of people and it is interesting to see what happens when other people’s crisis coping style are so far removed from my own. It’s been a test of patience for the whole team to operate smoothly when the weakest link is struggling. I’ll let you know how we get on.

If in the meantime you’d like to do something to help, you can donate money through the Mexican Red Cross organisation who are leading the rescue operation and obviously need every penny they can get.


Stormy Waters

Beach Debris

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