Rivers of lava are flowing over a Spanish island but one house is standing unscathed.
Dubbed a “miracle” the house’s picturesque white walls and orange roof stood out on La Palma, Spain, as much of the isle was turned into a barren, burning landscape after a volcanic eruption.
Ada Monnikendam, the house’s builder, told El Mundo she was elated to see photos of the house still standing on social media.
“I know that house! She said, “My husband and I built that house!”
Monnikendam called the home’s owners, a retired Danish couple in their 80s, who used to visit a few times a year but hadn’t traveled to the island since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The couple wept in joy.
“Even though we can’t go now, we’re relieved that it’s still standing,” Monnikendam said the owners told her.
Much of the island was not so lucky. The area was engulfed by dark rock and embers, which plowed through houses and swimming pools. They also appeared to devour roads and vegetation.
The effects of the eruptions may only get worse as the lava flow slows. On Thursday, officials said it had decreased to an approximately 12-foot-per-hour creep, raising fears it would stop moving entirely and grow thicker, leaving more of the island destroyed, the Associated Press reported. Walls of lava have grown 50 feet high in some areas, and the rock has swallowed at least 410 acres of land.
Residents lost not only their homes but their livelihoods, according to Reuters. The banana farmers ran to pack their vehicles with all their crop before they evacuated. However, not all of the crops could be saved.
“Some farms have already been covered,” Sergio Caceres, manager of producers association Asprocan, told Reuters, adding that 15 percent of the island’s annual banana production was jeopardized.