Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Flash flooding August 2013

I have been deciding if I want to blog this at all.  I have lived in my home since I was 6 years old and I have never had to deal with this.  My house has stood here for 65 years.  My grandfather built it!  In those 65 years it has NEVER flooded.  Well that all changed on August 9th 2013.  It was a freak thing.  I had received an alert on my phone that there were flash floods in my area but I ignored it because that is down the road, not at my house, never my house.  I am far enough up the hill that I normally do not have to deal with those things.  

What/How it happened:  I live next to a small creak.  There had been some pretty crazy storms going through the previous few days that made the stream levels higher than normal but that's not what did it.   The rain weakened the side of the embankment right where a large tree grew.  Between the weakened embankment, continued rain and weight of the tree the tree fell into the creek.  Normally that still wouldn't do anything.  On this one day, this one chance tree falling it fell with the top pointed towards the bridge over the stream.  The tree was then pushed into the opening of the bridge and all the branches and leaves blocked the flow of water.  This made all that water go rushing up and over the bridge and road right into my yard, garage and my basement.  My mail carrier witnessed it as it happened right when she was delivering mail.  She said the water was half way up her tires of her SUV.  That's pretty dang high!  Lucky for us she called from her cell phone to have the road crews come unclog the tree ASAP.  She told me that by time she did the next part of her route and came back towards my house the water was gone and she could continue down our road approximately 30 minutes later.  All this mess in such a short time amazes me.

My garage had over a foot of water in it.  The basement flooded and I lost a lot of my Christmas items.  The force of the water and mud was so much that totes that were full were picked up and flipped into the muck.  Other totes had water and mud deposited into them from the top even though they were closed because they are not water proof.  The riding lawn mower moved over 100 ft down the driveway.  Sophistication's Cozy Coupe went from in front of the garage all the way into the way back yard.  We found railroad ties in the middle of our yard as well as a TON of bamboo.  I was lucky.  Even though I am still cleaning everything the important stuff is still there.  My hot water tank still works, the washer, dryer and freezer all work.  My furnace is opened all the way to dry it out so my cousin can come check it out (he works for a company and does it professionally so I'm in good hands).  

Once the house is finished being dried out, cleaned, and organized the yard comes last.  I'm pretty sure that the yard will not be done until next year.  It is a last priority of mine.  Sophistication has somewhere to play out front so the back and side yards can be a mess.  It will get done, eventually.  

In some ways this has been a blessing.  My basement and garage are getting cleaned when I have put if off for years and years and it keeps just collecting junk.  Now I will have a nice, clean, organized basement.  My garage is the emptiest I've seen it in YEARS and it's nice to think I will be able to pull my car in it this winter.  I may have lost stuff.  But that is all it is, it is STUFF!  It is NOT important in the grand scheme of life.  It is all stuff that is replaceable.  


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