Sunday, June 08, 2008

Didn't post yesterday - was too busy bailing (UPDATED)

Okay, that's a huge exaggeration, but we are getting slammed by some rather serious storms and there is flash flooding all around us (New Albin is higher than the river by quite a bit and we're on sandy soil which drains very well so it usually misses us). Barry is out this morning with the rescue units in Dorchester, Iowa, getting people off roofs and out of trees (though they were all supposed to evacuate last night so I don't know why they are even there).

Yesterday evening, around 7:00-ish, Barry looked into the sky directly overhead and saw a very weird sight: The clouds were all turning in a big circle centered over New Albin, like it was a bowl and somebody was stirring the batter. And you know what that means. Barry started yelling at the kids to get to the basement, which resulted in utter pandemonium, of course: Master K thought it was great and threw himself into the action with great enthusiasm, hollering and shouting and grabbing his most prized possessions (his iPod and his DVDs, as the XBOX was already in the basement) and pounding up and down the stairs too many times. Lil Miss A freaked at the thought of all the pets and insisted that I start hauling small animal cages down the stairs (which I was going to do anyway). Gary and Jack-Jack were easy, but Bo was nervous from all the yelling and just wanted to go to his Happy Place next to our bed, and the cats thought it was a game, the You Can't Make Us Stay in the Family Room Game, and they and I had a ?wonderful? time racing around the house over and over and over again. I think we probably would have made the tornado worse with all this emotional energy, had it not dissipated on its own. And then (of course) Lil Miss A had a fit because she realized the chickens were out in the storm. Now I adore my chickens, but I am not bringing a flock of chickens into the family room. So we had to deal with THAT.

Miss B was at work last night and got scared about driving home in the storm, so she left the car at work and caught a ride home with someone else, AND Barry has the Jeep right now, so if we're going to church (and we are) it's going to be rainboots and umbrellas for us. At least right now there is no wind.

Oh, and yesterday Lil Miss A left the freezer of our new fridge open just a little, and it iced over and we had to shut the whole thing down overnight to defrost, AND last time he mowed, Master K forgot to put the rainspouts back on the gutters so we got a lot of rain in our basement that didn't need to be there.

1. Master K says he didn't leave the rainspouts off, he didn't even bother to take them down, he just mowed around them. I'm supposed to be happy about this.
2. Barry stopped by the church right after services to tell everybody to get home ASAP and get their valuables out of their basements, as the water is rising here in town. The west side of town is worst off, as there are propane tanks floating over there, and the electric company is about to shut down power to New Albin to avoid accidents. Highway 26 is closed by mudslides just north of New Albin, and there are mutterings about closing the Blackhawk Bridge across the Mississippi at Lansing.
Another update:
Barry just called to say the waters are receding. They're even thinking of reopening the 26. We're okay here, no more water in the basement. And it's not raining!

Another update, now with pictures.

First, recognize this scene? It's more or less the same shot as the header at the top of my blog there, only with a little water added. Shot through the windshield because there was noplace to pull off the road.

These young guys launched a canoe in one flooded area, normally a marsh where you can't launch anything.

This dike at the water treatment plan broke. Not pretty.

That's the road to the Winnebago Valley, completely under water.

And then these are just photos of Highway 26 just north of town, after the water dropped back enough to reveal the road again. They had opened one lane for travel by the time I got these.

Barry saw my photos and just scoffed. "You wanna see flood photos? I got REAL flood photos." He got his before the water dropped back. But I haven't seen them yet.

Updated again at 2:09 p.m.: Thunder. Big dark clouds. Bleah. There's noplace for more water to go. Plus the Upper Iowa reached floodstage at Decorah this morning and all that water is headed downstream - should be here about now.

My father-in-law tried to get a news update about us but said that the national news says there's flooding in Missouri and Wisconsin, but said nothing about Iowa or Minnesota. I told him that's because Iowa only actually exists once every 4 years, at caucus time. Otherwise we're a big blank spot in the middle of the map. Heh.


Shallowsister said...

Whoa... I understand completely why you'll slosh your way to church. Some weeks are so stressful, we consider staying home just for peace and quiet, but that's when I really NEED to go, so I do, and always feel better after worship. Glad there was no tornado.

StitchinByTheLake said...

Bless your heart that's just awful! I'm so sorry that you're having all this rain. But I do enjoy reading your blog. :) I can just picture everyone trying to get to the basement! Blessings, marlene