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“Nothing prepares you to leave your home without knowing if you are going to return”

By hollisterclothingoutlet 05/04/2022 799 Views
SERGIO GARCIA Special envoy. El Paso (Santa Cruz de La Palma)

While the lava advances inexorably down the slopes of the Cumbre Vieja volcano, anxiety wreaks havoc among a population that helplessly witnesses the destruction of a life of work and sacrifice. Todoque, a town unknown to anyone who is not a resident of La Palma, was this Tuesday synonymous with desolation, millionaire losses and total ruin; of neighbors loading their vans with electrical appliances, furniture, bags of clothes and even animals, in a desperate attempt to steal from misfortune the minimum with which to start over, nobody knows when or where. 1,300 have been left on the street.

«The first feeling that strikes me in the morning is the certainty that, as much as man transforms the environment, it is nature that decides». Manuel Rodríguez is a resident of El Paso and he witnesses, shaken, a tragedy that many do not hesitate to describe as a "show", but which has plunged him into despair. This Tuesday, from the neighboring church of Tajuya, the viewpoint where the journalists gathered, he looked over an unreal scene, covered in a mantle of 'picón', as they call the ashes that slip through the corners of the island on the island. the lips, get tangled with the hair, dry the throat. All this while the volcano writhes between explosions and a distant roar like a storm that discharges with fury, fumaroles that rise above the valley and a restlessness that goes beyond words.

Manuel is afraid, he does not hide it. He is a contractor, he has a real estate agency, banana plantations... He also collects cars, some vintage ones- «although I have those on a remote farm», he sighs with relief-. On Monday he came to rescue two of them, "more than 100,000 euros in cars," he sighs. "People are frivolous about what is happening, but they don't realize that a sudden explosion can take us all ahead."

More information:

The lava enters Todoque, the last urban center before the sea

I. Asenjo Sergio Garcia

“The toxic cloud will not be very big”

Antonio Paniagua

"The lava can affect more than 1,000 houses"


This is the volcanic eruption of La Palma


He knows that "residing here means living with a tense calm, it's what happens every 50 years." And he makes a reflection, unusual for anyone who follows what happened more than 2,000 kilometers away. “I hope that this lasts for some time, because if it closes falsely, the accumulated tension that already highlights those 25 centimeters of deformation that the volcano has suffered, will burst looking for relief where it is least expected, who knows if threatening more inhabited".

«Nada te prepara para salir de tu hogar sin saber si vas a volver»

Silvia, her neighbor, looks out the window of her house, anguished. She lives in a vacant lot since a terrible fire destroyed her father's house a month ago, killing the farm animals. "And now this will never end," she whispers with emotion struggling to break the dikes that have been imposed. She is not the only one.

Thousands of people suffer with each shock, which undermines their properties, their way of life, their future. The authorities spoke on Tuesday that 1,300 inhabitants had abandoned Todoque, where the magma makes its way through crops, incandescent pools and even schools. The complete ruin. Because no one is unaware that a title deed is of little use if the land on which it stands is a graveyard of slag, unrecoverable for decades.

“There is a lot of pain. People with two houses who cannot enter any of them and who helplessly watch the lava advance»

Ana Cecilia Nasco recounted it this Tuesday from El Fuerte, the old barracks where the most affected await. Seniors, children, people with disabilities or simply people who do not have a family member to welcome them in a trance like this. It's hard, she recounted, “leaving your house without knowing if you'll be able to return to it one day. Nothing prepares you for that." In Puerto Naos, the residents entered this Tuesday in groups of four with the slogan of staying there no more than 10 minutes to save what they could take. “What am I taking?” She repeated this Tuesday, blocked.

A macabre lottery

Alexis is a taxi driver and has been taking evacuees for days to the places that have been her home for decades and that now participate in that macabre lottery. “There is a lot of pain, people with two houses who cannot enter any of them and have to spend the little they have saved by staying in a hotel.” They watch the progress of the fire, clinging to the hope that the lava flow will bypass their homes. speechless. «My son is 17 years old, but on Monday he called me terrified. A 3.8-magnitude earthquake shook the house, threw glasses on the floor, opened the oven door... He, at least, has a house. It is worse for his nephew, who works in El Paso, but lives in Tacande, another of the areas where the emergency teams have prohibited the passage due to the risk of it being lava grass.

In the midst of the tragedy there is no shortage of those who come with a camera to immortalize the cataclysm. Like Tony García, a retiree from Tenerife who has mixed feelings about what happened. "It is not coming to enjoy a misfortune, but a spectacle of nature that is worth seeing," he slides. Or Adriana Paternó, who has left the bar where she works for a few hours to attend a phenomenon “that you only see once in a lifetime”.

The experience, however, does not turn out as she expected. "I have an anguish in my chest... I'm stuck", she slips while she shows in her hands the ashes that permeate everything. Meanwhile, in the distance, the volcano vomits all her fury.


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