Flooding isn't out of the ordinary for parts of Brazil, but the last 24 hours have been particularly brutal, killing 96 people, destroying homes, and leaving people stranded in schools, at work, and even buses on the highway. Supposedly, it's the worst storm in Rio in 44 years, bringing record levels of rain in a very short period of time.
When Eli first mentioned to me that it was bad, I figured it was yet another one of those flash floods where the streets fill with water and go down after a few hours, like the time I convinced myself I would be stranded in a bus in Centro, and thankfully waded onto higher ground and got to the Metro. Plus, there has been terrible flooding in the past six months, both in Rio's Angra region and in Sao Paulo.
It wasn't until I saw the photos that my stomach dropped and I realize how bad things really were.
School was canceled, and people were warned not to risk going to work. Mudslides destroyed homes, and the water damage remains to be seen. Yet, despite the tragedy, Cariocas are resilient as always, and used humor to cope, even on Twitter and on video.
My heart goes out to everyone there, and here's to hoping the water recedes quickly and that everything can get back to normal.
Were you in Rio during the flood? How did you spend the worst of the storm?