Monday, May 4, 2015

Typhoon Maysak - part 1

Watching out our window

On Sunday, March 29, we had a large rainstorm. We were wondering if people would come to church in the storm.  I looked online to see what the weather looked like and saw the satellite image of a tropical storm directly over Chuuk.  This was our first warning that we would have a Category 5 typhoon.  (We stayed home.)

After 1 1/2 hours of fierce wind and rain from the south, it stopped raining and became calm.  We went to the top of our building to see what we could see of the damage.  Our neighbors lost their awning.  We could see into yards on both sides of our apartment building where homes were missing roofs.  We did not realize that we were in the "eye of the storm" but wondered if it was so.  People were outside picking mangoes and breadfruit from the trees that had fallen.  
After another 1 1/2 hours, it suddenly started to blow and rain again--this time from the north.  The second half of the typhoon was the strongest.  The houses on each side of us lost their roofs or were completely blown flat.

I took this picture of the tree below before the typhoon.  It was huge and had a massive trunk that included many vines, etc. (Notice the car driving under.  It was like driving through a tunnel). The next picture shows it on the ground after the storm.

After the storm.

The next pictures will show some of the damage.  They lost 98% of their natural food which they depend on heavily.

Many homes were also damaged or completely blown away.

 The next day we had a tsunami warning because of an earthquake in Papua New Guinea so we climbed up this hill.  I think the lagoon protected us because the tsunami did not materialize.  You can see down to the ocean.  With so many trees down we can see homes and things we never saw before because of the heavy vegetation.

We lost power during the storm and didn't get it again for about a week.  Fortunately our apartment building had a generator which they ran a few hours each day to keep our refrigerators somewhat cold and a little light.  The electricity also allowed running water so we would fill up all our containers and take showers during those hours.  Many people here live without electricity or running water all the time.

See next post.

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