More Hot Air

turrialba cow I was at the local bus station, waiting for the car to collect me after a trip to San Jose, passing the time by watching the television provided for the edification of passengers.

For once the fodder provided was not one of the endless soaps where over made up women alternately rage at or cringe before men in suits with suspiciously shiny hair.

No, on the screen was a real cow gloomily walking through what looked like a blizzard at night, voiding its bowels as it went – the cameraman homing in on this with the stupefaction of a true city dweller.

After some moments of this the screen shifted to photographs of various cars covered in dust…and finally to this:
Which explained the previous shots.

Volcano Turrialba had blown its stack in the early hours of the morning and was throwing ash and gas into the air at a rate of knots.
The few people living on its higher slopes had been evacuated, the cattle were being brought down, suffering from respiratory problems in the sulphur laden air and for some fifty kilometres to the north west proud owners of cars came out to discover their pride and joy covered in ash.

It appears that where the volcano once had two craters, the explosion had removed the ‘wall’ which separated them, so it’s now down to one which is fizzing away for all it is worth.

The experts have gone up to see what is happening…and. most importantly, to determine whether this eruption is ‘just’ gas, or whether magma is involved…in which case, given the risk of lava flows, evacuation will be on the grand scale.

Needles to say our local news online service had to get into the act, despite the fact that we are between 90 and 100 kilometres away and its Facebook page is full of pics of ash covered cars and distraught owners urging their wives on to greater efforts with the squeegie.

Still, it makes a change from pictures of floods, collapsed roads and gory motorcycle accidents, I suppose.

Once at home I caught up on the stuff on the internet…and on one site I saw an ad for a finca for sale….ideal for quiet rural living.
Where was it?

I don’t think the advertiser stands much chance just at the moment..


42 thoughts on “More Hot Air”

  1. Pretty much the way the “media” see and relay things. By the way, did you know that the current atmospheric fug in Iceland is called “vog” For volcanic fog.The Scrabblers must love it!

  2. It’s strange to remember hearing about the news before the Internet. I either watched the evening news or read the paper in the am. Now we can get news 24/7 from multiple sources. A good thing for sure–as in the story you just mentioned–but also a little overwhelming at times. 🙂

  3. I agree with you. Wish that cow was walking through that rain here. Southern Calif. is all excited over the forecast for rain tomorrow. What percentage? 10%… For now, that’s about as good as it gets. So much for reporting, advertising, etc. and accuracy. Have a good weekend. :=_

  4. Don’t think I will be buying that finca, a little too close for comfort. We stayed in a wonderful hotel in the Congo many years back, and I remember watching the glow at night from several volcanoes surrounding the area. We promised we would return as it was such a lovely spot. We never made it ,and the whole area got wiped out in and eruption a few years later!

    1. Leo’s parents were posted to the Congo pre war and I’m sure I remember his mother saying that she had seen active volcanoes there…

      Good job sometimes that we don’t keep our promises!

    1. It’s been a rum year…shorter rainy seasons, now widespread problems with roads collapsing or being blocked and to top it all a volcano doing its stuff….did I come here for a quiet life….

  5. When our Mount St. Helens erupted, I wanted to get close and see the ash. My brother refused; ash in car engines and lungs are equally bad.

  6. Just love the image of the discursive cameraman mesmorised by a crapping cow to the extent that he forgets there is a volcano in full cry 🙂

  7. You capture it all here, Helen – from the mundane to the dramatic and what a lot of drama there is in that country of yours! And the irony too. Hope you are well away from it all and that it doesn’t cause too many problems.

    1. We;re about 100 kilometres away….they are still checking for magma and reporting increased activity in other volcanoes, one of which is a bit closer!

      No ash fallen in my little corner…so no need to clean the car!

  8. Volcanoes scare me to death, frankly. Ever since my visit to Pompeii and subsequently the moonscape of Mt. St. Helen’s, I am relieved to live in my little corner of the world. I am glad you are safely out of the ash zone and stay safe please!

    1. Sinister buggers, aren;t they! They sit there, all innocent, for years and then start raining rocks and lava like a sailor on pay day…
      We;re out of their immediate range…though we do have earthquakes. However, since we had a couple of earthquakes in France it’s not a big deal – though I’m glad that the one with the epicentre 14 kilometres from here took place at 70 kilometres down…otherwise I might have beeen revising my opinions!

      1. Believe it or not, Helen, we’ve been having a bit of seismic activity in central VA in recent years. It was big news when the first quake hit in Louisa County just up the road from us…something like a 5.8 which did its fair of damage and caused howls of derisive laughter at our reaction from Californians. Experienced at this, you know? And yes, sinister buggers indeed.

          1. We had that when in France when a tornado passes through…one poor gentleman we encountered in the insurance company’s waiting room had been watching TV when his chimney collapsed into the room…

  9. Nothing on the news here that I noticed. C.R. is too far off the UK radar. I saw the eruption on HuffPost, pictures ’n’ all. I’m glad to know you’re safe (although when people say that I always think ‘but what about all the others who are not. But hen, we do tend to keep our compassion tightly reined to those we know).

    Nasty buggers, volcanoes, and earthquakes are no fun either. Stay sae.

    I enjoyed your comment about men encouraging the little woman to make with the squeegee. You haven’t lost your acerbic tongue or your sense of humour. Good.

    1. The area affected has a tiny population….luckily, and most moved away some years ago when the sulphurous gas began to affect the pastures…it certainly isn’t somewhere that i would want to live. Life is exciting enough watching the slips on the fault line across the valley getting closer to an expensive eco house and wondering if we shall ever have a bridge again..without paying for it ourselves.

      The clips of the men indignant about the potential damage to their cars and ‘the little woman’ actually doing something about it tickled me…

  10. Talking of the distance between you and the volcano, this is something people never comprehend. When there’s a bomb threat or flooding or power cuts on the other side of Belfast somewhere, people ask us if we’re all right, as if it was all happening a few doors away.

    I certainly wouldn’t want to live too close to a volcano, even if it had been dormant for decades. Volcanoes can suddenly spring to life with no warning whatever.

  11. I immediately thought of you when I read about the eruption. I’m glad to hear you are what should be a safe distance away. My parents’ farm had the ash from the eruption of Mt. St. Helens dumped on it. Everything was covered in an inch of ash. It was a huge mess. There’s a picture of my dad and brother up on the roof of the house shovelling it off, minus any kind of protective face masks. Your comment about the car owners urging their wives on to greater efforts with the squeegies is hilarious!

    1. That must have been dreadful….but, it’s true, we didn’t take much notice of risks in the past…just kept on shovelling!

      It just struck me watching the clips that behind every gesticulating man was a woman actually doing something about it…

  12. Isn’t it odd how we just get used to living with such things as volcanoes, earthquakes, flooding, etc. I am often amused by the reaction of tourists here when they are informed that earthquakes are more or less a daily occurrence. Not always serious ones of course, but enough to put people off booking their holidays. I think there are more risks living in the UK to be honest.

  13. TV at the bus station? Wow. Loved your description of the male soap stars 🙂
    As for the squeegee, ithat’s all very well and good but if the volcanic ash has got into the engine then the car won’t be going far, clean or not….
    Hope that the ash didn’t make it to you, Leo and your assorted menagerie.

    1. Not only TV at the bus station, but street lights at every house out on the country lanes…this is civilised Costa Rica, not rural France!,

      No ash for us, luckily…we’re in a little bowl in the hills which seems to escape the winds from the east.
      Says she, crossing fingers that she has not tempted fate before the Trade Winds due in December… that they don’t have the sails of merchantmen to fill they turn their attention to ripping roofs from houses….

  14. I thought you had gone suddenly quiet and put it down to your hols, but no, WP had as usual arbtitrarily decided you were not appropriate reading material for my delicate eyes. ‘Tis remedied now. Until the next time of course.

    I do like the cow piccy. I am not a big believer in tempting fate. Given the med is on fault lines and so could technically have tidal waves and flooding, I would not live in reclaimed land or near the sea. The wise woman bought her flat upon the rock… I would apply the same principle to volcanos and keep well away. Good for the land though afterwards apparently.

    1. Good of WP, wasn’t it> They must have our best interests at heart….

      Not easy to judge with volcanoes….knowing my luck I’d decide that the last load of lava had degraded into wonderfully fertile soil and simultaneously the volcano would decide to deposit a new load…

      No, i keep well away. Collapsed bridges are quite enough to be dealing with at the moment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s