About four days ago a hole began to develop in the road that runs by our house. I say that without having been aware of said hole; only our neighbor whose property adjoins the road at that spot noticed it, because at first it wasn’t a hole, but merely a soft spot on the road. I must have driven over that soft spot three or four times and noticed nothing.

But three days ago a chunk of the street, about five feet square, collapsed. It was revealed that water designed to cross under the street in a culvert had encountered a blocked culvert, so the water made its way down the hill for a few yards before efficiently boring a new passageway under the street to continue its flow. It was an admirable bit of nature design efficiency.

Yes, admirable, but also sobering. The street had been repaved just four years ago and the hole revealed just how superficial the new surface was in comparison to any change in what nature demanded.

With three powerful earthquakes in Ecuador and Japan in the last week it was sobering to see the power of a tiny rivulet of water as it took charge over a blocked culvert. Our sense of security from what humans construct is an illusion.