Black Rain or a Typhoon?

The last couple of days were… Nuts.

8th OCTOBER 2021

We had been watching a typhoon coming in for a couple of days. Actually, there were two typhoons in the area. We woke up Friday morning to a lot of rain. Like a lot. I think most of us were waiting for the typhoon signal to go up, but it stayed at T3. It was only yellow or red rain when we got to school. I was soaked by the time I got to school that morning. It had to be black rain. I have no idea why it wasn’t black rain at that time.

It wasn’t long after we got to school that we were getting the black rain signal.

So this sucks. Rules and regulations say that the kids can’t leave until the signal goes down to red. It was a Friday, so that meant that the kids (in secondary school) were only in school until 1 pm. If it was still black rain by the time we dismissed school, the kids would have to stay.

Well, guess what happened at 1 PM?


I was in a class with a group of 8 kids. Bub was also in that class. We tried to engage. the kids as best as we could, but by 2 PM, it was still black rain.

The kids could call their parents and be picked up if they were picked up and checked off a list by a member of the senior leadership team.

Unfortunately for Bub, H was at the market and Monkey was at school. He was stuck at school because I was stuck at school even though we lived so close to the school.

I cycled through the science classrooms in an effort to give the teachers a chance to eat something and take a break.

By about 3 PM (this is when primary school would be dismissed), the school was able to make the judgment to let the kids go home. If they didn’t leave in a pretty tight window, there was a chance they were going to be stuck there longer because the rumor was that the typhoon signal was going to be raised.

Lucky for Bub (or unlucky), just 15 minutes before the announcement was made, his elder sister came to get him from school. He was able to get out of there.

I think I stuck around for a short time after to make sure all of my year 11s were able to get out of there.

My walk home was a bit wet. There was actually a sort of break in the weather to a certain extent. It was less deluge than it had been probably an hour earlier.

It’s been a while since we’ve seen that kind of rain I think.

It wasn’t until around 6 PM that night before the black rain signal switched to red rain. There were other schools in my company that hadn’t been able to let the kids go. There is one school in the company where many of the kids take a ferry to get to school. Because of the weather, the ferry wasn’t running. It wasn’t until the signal changed that the ferries started moving again and the kids were able to leave. So those kids were stuck at school until 6 PM. I could not imagine being stuck in that situation.

Not only are we talking about a wide range of ages in the kids (looking at this school and my own, we are year 1 through year 13), but there was no food available on the campuses due to the COVID regulations. These kids were stuck in a room with no food other than what they may or may not have had for lunch.

That was such a crazy day. There was a lot of criticism surrounding the choice to not call black rain or a typhoon sooner. I really don’t know. Who could have known it would go that badly? I mean we really didn’t think it would stay black rain that long. No one did.

9th OCTOBER 2021

For most of the day, the signal stayed at T3.

It was just before 7 PM that the signal changed to T8.

It was actually not as bad as the day before. The rain the day before was crazy. The wind had stayed pretty consistently strong.

Unfortunately for Monkey, it was also her birthday. She had wanted this rainbow fruit cake that we had when we first came to Hong Kong. We weren’t able to get to the shops because of the weather. I did make her a cake for her birthday, but we won’t sing to her until we can get the rainbow cake she wants.

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