Archive - April 27, 2015

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Earth, Wind and Fire (and Rain)

Earth, Wind and Fire (and Rain)

The peaceful, benevolent skies we encountered ten days ago in the wide open Patagonian pampa of grazing sheep and guanacos turned dark and turbulent this past week, releasing a two-day torrential deluge, isolating ranchers,  engorging rivers and washing away hundreds of sheep. Having recently explored that landscape heightens the distress. Though we know that this is a land of extremes, it continues to shock and surprise. Last month, the news carried scenes of massive mudslides in the northern desert region and raging fires in southern forests. This week, without any warning, the Calbuco volcano, inactive for forty-five years, spewed columns of red hot lava and gigantic, lightning-pierced clouds of ash and stone skyward. The ash and gravel settled in thick layers on nearby villages, farms, roads and fields. Locals were evacuated until it was deemed safe to return their homes. We city dwellers watch in shock televised scenes of horses . . .

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