This is my good friend, Eli, his little rescue puppy. We met each other within the first days after Hurricane Maria hit on September 20th. Don’t be fooled by the smiles on our faces for the photo opp, we were utterly exhausted. Although, this picture was only about three months ago, it feels like another life from years back.
Eli had just retired from the board of Education back in NY after 33 years. He was coming to Puerto Rico to visit friends and family. The next thing he knows he’s living out of the Comfort Inn trapped in Puerto Rico because of Mari’s carnage.
For a month straight, the daily life of post Maria was extremely difficult. Communications had been annihilated. If you needed to speak to the airport, you had to go the airport. The problem was that if you chose to do that, you’d be using a lot of gas to get there. And once you were out of gas, there was no replacing it. Many people had no choice and went to the airport anyway, only to find out all flights were cancelled. And guess what ? — Now they had to sleep at the airport. That’s how crazy it got.Despite everything Maria threw at Eli, he kept that puppy by his side the whole time. And in return, the puppy managed to offer Eli some solace in an apocalyptic moment of time.
After 15 days of hell, Eli made it off the island and over to Florida. It’s amazing after only two weeks of knowing each other, Eli, myself and other members of our temporary crew will always been friends. The things that happened, and the things we saw can never be undone or unseen. And through that, an unbreakable bond was formed.
I will never refer to Hurricane Irma or Hurricane Maria as positive experience, that goes without say. But, great friendships were formed. And for that I’m grateful.
Have a great night friends.