A Flintstone Kind of Day

Rocks.  Millions or rocks on the beach where there was once mostly sand and sand where there was once beautiful flowerings plants rooted into earth. Last year the lake level hit the hundred-year high.  Three years ago it was at historic lows, so bad that the ports on Ometepe had to be dredged for the ferries to dock.  Two years of heavy rains and two years of hurricanes and now we are building a. natural retaining wall with the rocks brought in from the storms.

It has been almost four years since signing for the land that is Harmonia and every year the water run-off has a slightly different pattern.  The areas where the rain discharges into the lake are eroding along the sides.  We lost ten coconut palms and three orange trees that washed away on the hundred year high, as well a neem and a producing noni tree.  Two moringa trees collapsed last week.  The area beneath a major tree along the shore is flooded but it’s only June.   We have two more days of heavy labor to to fill in the run-offs with rock that feeds into a 1-2 foot wall, discharging the water in a less erosive manner.  The best route might be chicken wire and rebar and letting the natural woody weeds to grow through the sides.  The bamboo washed away in the last hurricane.  No one else seems to know about erosion control or have any desire to deal with their own properties.  My neighbor is in risk of losing 150 s.f. of land and has done nothing to rectify the situation,

I suppose all of this is important to know and will prevent failures in the future, but, oh, the physical labor!  I spent two days  hauling rocks (always good to let the make crew see the female boss twice their age pulling her weight) and replanting hundreds of zinnia seedlings from my yard. It was pouring rain today. I had a tank top, but no sweater or jacket, and it was cold.  I figured it was good time to plant, so I carried on for several hours until the idea of a cup of hot chocolate at home became too much of a distraction.

I pay heavy duty rock and machete work twice the prevailing rate and I limit it to 5 hours a day. Tomorrow morning a crew will be ready to chop down the way overgrown thorny ant trees (cornesuelo, of the acacia family) in the upper section.  It was cleared 3 years ago for the  drone footage and now it is an overgrown mess.  It’s so hard to keep up with one person and a limited budget.

Time for some sleep.  Pictures to follow tomorrow.

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