A good tropical torrential rain is a wonderful thing. It is cooling and so refreshing. At this time of year Taiwan is blessed with so many torrential downpours.
Typhoon Fung-wong has been bearing down on Taiwan for the past few days. Like a thundering bowling ball it hit the central east coast early this morning, hurled over the 3000m mountain range and left the central west coast early this evening. Though the winds were not too strong, the rain has been steady. And there is yet more to come over the next day as the tail of the typhoon drops its remaining water. It is now on its way to China and hopefully on course to Beijing for a final scrub down before the Olympics.
Today was a typhoon holiday, the second in three weeks. All government and major businesses were closed to allow people to stay home, watch TV, sing songs and nibble through mountains of snacks. Small shops and many markets remained open for business. Like the rain jacket van and the vegetable vendor below.
Things are generally well organised for the heavy rains. Drainage is pretty good, all rivers have large levees, bridges and overpasses are built to deal with the volumes of rain that can come.
Our own laneway is prone to flooding whenever we receive more than a few hundred millimeters over a couple of hours. Despite regular complaints to the authorities and the occasional re-digging of the drains, most the neighborhood have resigned to providing individual flood control. We let the floodwaters into the outside section of the house but board up the two ground floor entries to give us an extra 30cm of flood comfort. Last year the boards were reached twice. So far this year they have not been reached.
And every good rain takes out at least a few roads. Typhoon Kalmaegi three weeks ago washed out sections of this road below. The excavators here are widening the river just 2 day ago. In anticipation of more flooding perhaps?
Or an orchard placed too close to a river.
When it rains, people generally just get on doing what they always do.
Here are links to some East Asian typhoon resources.