Monday, November 27, 2006

when it rains, it pours



This is a picture of Muharraq at 8:45 a.m., yesterday, Nov. 26th. Muharraq is one of the biggest cities in Bahrain. (edit: hubby said that one of the license plates on a car is Saudi, so maybe this isn't Bahrain after all... apparently Saudi gets a lot of rain up north)

We had a major rain storm yesterday... hence the picture. I woke up to huge bangs that sounded like bombs dropping at about 4 a.m., with each one getting louder and louder - obviously as the thunder got closer - then all of a sudden at about 5:00 a.m., it started to down pour.

This is the first time, since living here, that I've experienced such heavy rain that lasted all day long. And... for that matter, I've NEVER heard thunder before in this country. It was quite different than thunder in Dallas and in the States... like I said, it sounded more like bombs dropping than anything. It was the weirdest sound and sort of frightening. When I heard it, I kept thinking... "what is that sound" - wondering if a construction crew had already started working that early (which isn't odd - it happens a LOT). I love heavy rain, the kind that lasts for days, but the rain here wrecks havoc on the streets and in the homes. I wonder how many of these ppl had insurance... and, if so, does the insurance cover such damage?

The streets in Bahrain aren't equipped to handle so much rain. You get massive flooding like you see here. So many streets were like small little lakes yesterday. It took us about 30 or so mins. to get to work yesterday, whereas it usually takes about 5 mins. I tried going down a street lastnight and it was totally flooded and blocked off. I wound up having to turn around and come back home. I can't imagine living in some of these areas that were heavily flooded. The open land next to our house has a small little lake in it now... but it's nothing in comparison.

Our house was leaking like crazy yesterday morning w/ little ponds forming in some of the bathrooms and in a couple of the rooms. Our garage had a steady stream of water coming down one of the walls. Any day now, I feel like something will happen and our garage will crumble. No, it's not that bad, but I can't get over how poorly things are built here. Our house isn't that old and it leaks like crazy. I can't imagine how it would be if it rained for several days w/out stopping. I think the whole country would collapse. Makes me wonder what ppl were thinking when they planned the streets and what type of ppl built these homes. There are no groups that come and check to be sure you're building properly.... no wonder houses are in such bad shape.

And the roads - they're crazy. Ppl act crazy... honking at you if you don't move fast enough. Lastnight when I was going down this flooded street, I stopped to allow a little tiny car to turn in front of me, and you'd think that I got out of my car and just left it there w/ the way ppl were honking. Plus, I don't take any risks when I'm driving and by myself. I try to be careful, especially in bad weather. Really, there were a few times that I felt like getting out of the truck and saying, "look, I'm pregnant... STOP honking at me and learn to have some patience." But, in all actuality, they wouldn't have cared. These ppl are like crazy idiots.... thank God you're not allowed to have guns here!

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

We had exactly the same situation in Baku the other day, it was at the end of october.

I will send you the pics :)

PPl here honk at the traffic lights :))) So no worries.

Anonymous said...

OH LOL you know what? wather enter from the windows! and in the storage room every thing I guess is weet , but I dont even want to go now and loot at it last year i was crasy runing and getting all weet trying to see what happend in that room but this year i say you know what? leave it .. so in few more days maybe 2 i will go with 3 more ppl to help me and opend every thing I have there and see if any thing is weet to make it dry! ... I love rain but in a safe place! LOL hugs !

Mahmood Al-Yousif said...

that was a brilliant downpour! you should see the lake in front of our house now, unbelievable. We even had some swallows flying all around the place catching bugs and flying insects for their food. It was a nice sight. I just wonder when the municipality will come over and suck all that water out.

That picture suggests that it is in Bahrain, if you look at the van, you will see election campaign posters stuck to it, and the logo at the bottom says "jidhafs.net", which is a village at the start of the Budaiya highway. So it could be from Jidhafs, or one of the old neighbourhoods in any village on the Budaiya road.

The URL given on the picture doesn't work, directory enquiries says that there are too many Hussain Fardans (who has taken the picture) so I couldn't reach the actual photographer to ascertain the genuiness of the picture, but I have some people working on it, once that is known, I'll let you know.

As I sit facing my garden now, I can see the sky becoming overcast. So although the weather report says no rains over the next few days, you might wake up yet again with some bangs to start your day!

Olivia at Work said...

I tried really hard to imagine thunder that didn't roll but sounded like bombs...

We had thunder and lightning in London on Saturday and Sunday - and it is November. Added to that, we are still in the mid-50s Fahrenheit! (14 deg. C today.)

By now we should be wrapping our noses with our scarves, but I left my scarf and gloves at home and am wearing a velvet jacket.

The reason the buildings are not durable is for the same reason that town in Turkey fell apart last year in the earthquake - while the ones in Greece withstood it (EU building regulations). They just don't have to.

These places are not industrial world leaders like Europe, North America, and Japan, so quality of materials and construction and even site safety standards are not up to par.

oh god can't decide whether i sound like my father or one of the analysts whose interviews I type. You well know it's not like me to go all political...

Anyhoo, what I hate here is when the drivers about 5 cars down see the lights turn green, they immediately sound the horn. For heaven's sake, they have to wait for all the cars in front to move and it takes more than one second!

The Moody Minstrel said...

My mouth is hanging open looking at that photo. Ladies and gentlement, the desert kingdom is now a lake!

That whole thing sounds pretty scary. I mean, even Japan, which is accustomed to monsoon rains and typhoons every year and (supposedly) built to deal with them, I've seen it flood pretty bad. I can't imagine what it must be like to have a serious squall hit a place that doesn't comprehend rain.

At least you guys didn't wash away.

tilda said...

Omg, that looks soo scary. Thank god you guys are okay, though the other people seemed to be like a huge pain in the ass.

jahooni said...

I am very happy for you (not for the flooding of course) but for the rain. I know how much you love it, as do I. Mom doesn't.... so I guess we don't get that from her!

It rained here today too.

Enjoy it and go dance in the rain....

Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Rain? What's that?
We will be on Level 4 water restrictions in ten days time which means we cannot water the garden except using buckets of bath water and washing machine water! No hoses, no tap water.
We have forgotten what rain is like.
Give us some of it hey!
Wendy

Blayde said...

It is Saudi, but that doesnt change the fact that it really came down here as well... and the accidents? 140 in 8 hours, staggering!

gazza27 said...

Ans i thought we had it bad,that is so scarey?

Olivia at Work said...

I hope you are all okay and not too stressed.
xxx

Sam said...

I now understand what my friends from abraod meant when they used to say 'rolling thunder.' I'm in Malaysia now where it rains everyday...and got to hear the 'rolling' thunder. Back in Saudi and Bahrain...the thunder doesn't roll; more like an atom bomb exploding above you.

As for the lack of municipality action...I guess they'd rather sit the first couple of days out and make sure the pouring stops...lest they 'suffer' the hard work of cleaning up and it rains again. Besides...the sun will come out in no time...why not let nature lend a helping hand with evaporation?

still breathing said...

u know what happened here yesterday?

NOTHING...again.

i wish it'd rain!

Anonymous said...

another sad story of the Earth...

Leilouta said...

The same thing happened in Tunisia a few years ago.

Munther said...

Hello tooners, welcome to every Bahraini nightmare / school kid dream (some schools shut due to rain) ! I agree with you that over here we rarely get rain but when it does it pours down as if its trying to make for all the months of dry weather !:D I don't think that this pic is from Muharraq because I've spent the whole day over there yesterday at my grans and it wasn't that bad !