Saturday, October 29, 2011

Chipi Chipi [The Famous]

I got out of bed one night to head to the latrine.  I blearily made my way outside into the intense quiet and for one heart-leaping moment, I was convinced it was snowing.  In the glare of my headlamp I could see gently falling flecks swirling around my head.  Of course, I was comfortably standing outside in shorts, a tank top, and rainboots, so that explanation didn’t hold water.  It dawned on me that this new precipitation – not quite fog, mist, or drizzle – was the Chipi Chipi that the Verapaces are so famous for. 

The rainy season seems to be transitioning out of its roaring phase in which the clouds open up and pound down on the tin roof with a force that makes hearing one’s own thoughts a challenge.  This new mood of soundless wet creeps in and out of the valley and leaves laundry damp even when hung safely under the eaves.  This gentler phase is welcome.  It means the pathways are drying out into solid ground once more, and I no longer fear an involuntary slip-and-slide experience on my way between my house and the road. 

It does signal that dry days are probably not far off.  I need to begin to monitor how well the rain fills my water tank.  In the months to come I may wistfully think of the days when my laundry wouldn’t dry once I reach the point that water is not readily available for laundry on a whim.


  1. Chipi chipi! What a musical name for precipitation. I wish I could visualize it! Outside my window is a mixture of snow and rain on this gray, 34 degree October 29th in Virginia.

  2. I'm so intrigued! I was hoping to find a video or something, but only found the Chipi Chipi song from Motorcycle Diaries.