Days 4, 5, 6 - Camuy, Isabela, Adjuntas, Utuado, Las Marías, Aguada - Nicole
Some impressions from days 4, 5 & 6, when we were so busy working, documenting, dialoguing and processing that I couldn't get my thoughts out in writing...an incredible three days with Don Luis Soto, Casa Pueblo, Plenitud PR and my beautiful friend Kari:
Talk of a full month of day to day crisis for all with 20 hour gas lines, bank lines, no food, restrictions on cash withdrawals, no water, no communications...but miracles every day, community, neighbors and friends.
Finding friends thinner than when we left them last due to limited food supply and hard work clearing roads and debris, digging out of landslides by hand for weeks at a time.
Root vegetables survived the storm and provided our friends with nourishment in the weeks following until the greens began to grow again.
Talk of trauma, especially in children, who feared another storm would come each and every day.
Reconnecting to nature, tentatively, a little bit at a time.
Dead mangrove stands, overinundated by 20 foot waves, now skeleton forests along the coast.
Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds are cherished on this island, the growers who see their seed packets brighten up and burst into smiles.
Loving hugs, heart to heart.
Turning earth with handmade tools, planting seeds.
History made with the first solar powered radio transmitter at Casa Pueblo de Adjuntas.
Press conferences, interviews, reporters traipsing up mud packed hillsides, cleared for planting and solar installations.
Walks on the coast with old friends, dialogues giving true insight to the inner trauma still being processed by the people of the island.
Relief in the form of friendship-sharing cold Coronas and delicious meals.
Café, everywhere we stop, café.
Learning and working with groups of college students traveling from Minnesota, preparing for a future of sustainability, resiliency, community.
Hands in the earth, arms scraped by patches of fresh cut patchouli.
Camping on a mountainside in veritable paradise, waking up to a tropical sunrise and smiling faces working towards a sustainable future.
Breaks by the river, climbing on the rocks, splashing and laughing.
Sharing fruits off of trees with new friends who were strangers just hours before.
Learning how to prevent landslides with terraforming.
Our first drink of water that tasted pure...filtered tropical rainwaters at Plenitud.
Seeing old friends and making new ones.
Earthship construction sites.
Earthbag and super adobe buildings, with ZERO hurricane damage.
Winding mountain roads with crumbled edges from the tropical rains, barricade everywhere warning not to get too close.
Skin healing from the pure mountain air and water.
The power of pachamama.