15 - The Help That I Needed

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Felipe Altamirano Alvarez Espadachín

I was with the old man who we had just rescued. He was thanking me numerous times for rescuing him.

After I made him sit on a chair, I began to walk around the house thinking about the letter that I got from the Comandante General.

Because of my experience in the army, before joining the Policía Nacional, in fighting narcoterrorists in the Itenez Forest Reserve, the Comandante General believed that I was the ideal person for leading the Police Operations in the entire stretch of Rainforests along the border with Brazil.

I was made the Capitán de las regiones de la selva tropical (Captain of the Rainforest Regions). Roboré was the only civic center to be under my jurisdiction. The rest of the areas under my jurisdiction were to be thick rainforests.

Dealing with criminals taking advantage of the weather conditions, and rescuing those who needed to be rescued, were all on my list of responsibilities.

As much as I was glad about my new post, I was also worried about how I would carry out my responsibilities.

It is true that I have a lot of experience in the rainforests, but I needed to know how the rivers there would behave (especially in that weather) if I had to do my duties well. I believed that the dam collapse might have had a profound impact on the rivers in the jungle. So, I needed someone who studied rivers to help me with understanding what effects the weather and the collapse of the dam would have had on the rivers in the area which was to be under my jurisdiction.

The Comandante General informed me that my replacement would arrive via helicopter in a week's time. So, I had a week's time to find that person who would help me understand that which I sought to understand.

The Comandante General promised to assist me with all the material supplies that I needed to fulfill my responsibilities in the rainforests. We were not given helicopters but we were given lots of jeeps, 3 amphibious vehicles and lots of ammunition. We were given lots of ammunition because we ran the risk of encountering gangs that might be smuggling drugs.

However, only ten boats were given to us because a lot of boats belonging to the Army and Police were washed away after the collapse of La Madre De Princesa Irene.

As I was wondering about how would I find that someone I was seeking, my eyes fell on a certificate which was on a shelf at that old man's house.

Shifaly Udawatte

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Shifaly Udawatte

I met someone called Bernita Beatriz Risotto today afternoon (when we had lunch), from among the Bolivian kids.

She was just like me. She loved BTS. We BTS fans always like to see another member of the BTS Army. Her bias (a BTS term for favorite artist) was Jin, just like Avanthi.

She told me that she loved Sri Lanka and that she wanted to visit my country one day. I also learned she had three cousins who lived in Al Wabb, Doha, Qatar. They were doing their high school at GEMS American Academy - Qatar. Her cousins lived in Qatar because their father (Beatriz' paternal uncle) was a pilot with Qatar Airways and their mother taught Spanish at a British School in Al Khor, Qatar.

She also told me that she was going to visit Doha that December.

We exchanged contacts so that if she ever came to Doha, we could meet each other.

We saved our contacts offline because there was no connectivity. The mobile towers nearby were damaged beyond repair because of the winds.

She showed me a lot of Spanish songs which she had downloaded (she couldn't use Spotify because there was no connectivity) on her phone. Those were some songs that I've never heard of. My favorite song from the songs that she showed me was a song called 'Vívela' sung by Pablo Alborán.

She loved Pablo Alborán. After BTS, he was the artist that she loved the most. She had a celebrity crush on him. She thought that he looked very handsome. I agreed with her on that one.

That night, the second round of the storm took its toll on the building.

Those living on the last floor began complaining that water started to seep into their bedrooms.

Miss Dayani had sealed all the windows to mitigate the risk of them being broken by the heavy winds.

The winds were breaking branches outside and shaking the building.

Avanthi, exhausted from staying awake last night, fell asleep. After staying up for a while, even I fell asleep because of exhaustion.

Felipe Altamirano Alvarez Espadachín

I discovered that the man we rescued wasn't some ordinary old, wealthy old man.

From the certificate that I discovered, I learned that the name of the man we rescued was Basilio Armada.

The certificate I saw was a certificate of recognition that Basilio received, upon his retirement, from the University of La Paz. That certificate recognized his excellent service while being part of the University's faculty of Potamology and Engineering Geology.

A potamologist -someone who studies rivers- was exactly what I needed.

He was not only a former potamologist who taught potamology, but also someone who taught and studied Engineering Geology. So I knew that he must have known how a lot of dams worked.

My confidence in him grew when I saw numerous certificates (from different seminars on Potamology and Engineering Geology) on the other shelves.


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Dreus Dreyfus Roberto Amarillo El Quinto De Las Montañas

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