Monday, May 21, 2012

Scenes from a Flood Disaster Recovery

There are signs and sounds of recovery from last week's creek flood all around us!
Neighbors are salvaging what can be salvaged, hanging things
out to dry and ripping out and tearing down what cannot...
It's so true what they say... Water always wins. Seeing debris lines
in driveways reminds me how truly lucky we are that ours stops...
In the back yard and, that the water never reached our house!
Because the very dirty little secret is that flood water isn't just water...
Forget the flowery descriptions others might share about the odor
being offensive, because I'm just going to tell you... It stinks!
And, what didn't recede back into the creek remains as a smelly,
thick, sludgy-mud. Coating everything it touches like concrete!
So while I was thrilled to see the garden bench rise out of the creek
nearly in one piece, I can't lie and tell you that it didn't take hours to
scrub away the evidence of muck that came with it being swept away!
Just when I thought the worst was behind us, I came home
last Thursday night to find things had only gotten much worse!
You see, after nearly three days of continuous filtering, the koi pond had
to be drained in order to be cleaned. There was just too much sludge...
The hiding holes for the fish were completely full! What's worse, this
confirmed that seven of our 13 koi and goldfish did not survive. Also,
this meant the beneficial algae and the whole eco-system that was in
place to clean/sustain the pond naturally had also been washed away!
So the pond was drained, the liner cleaned up and the water
replaced. Along with a load of new mulch to go around the plants...
That have thankfully managed to pop back up!
New mulch reminds me that I owe you an update on the cabinet I picked up for
the kitchen to display part of my cake stand collection. While I was initially very
excited to refinish it, I received just as much input suggesting I leave the cabinet
as I found it. Being torn, I decided to live with it for a while until I could be sure
which option was best. I believed that if I listened carefully, the piece would tell
me what it wanted. But the cabinet wasn't speaking to me at all. And, the more I
consulted, the more I heard things about how difficult the interior construction
would make it to add the beadboard I wanted and, how difficult it would be to
match the existing shelves with new shelving I wanted to add to this cabinet!
And, when the third contractor I brought in asked me how much I paid
for the cabinet and then rudely replied that I got ripped off... I fired him
and decided that my destiny was not to have this cabinet. I decided instead
to re-list it for sale on Craigslist where I found it. And guess what? I sold it
within three hours of posting it. And, I sold it for $100 more than I paid!
But on Friday morning when the buyer phoned to say something came up and
she couldn't pick it up as planned, Army dad and I ended up taking the cabinet
with us since her house is on the way to the mulch yard in Wallburg! We
get all the mulch for our gardens there. Anyway, on the way home we stopped
by LA Reynolds for more new plants and, I couldn't resist also picking up...
A new set of windchimes to help ring in the recovery of our gardens!
Indeed, everywhere we look things seem to be getting a bit
better. See? The neighbor's septic line is back over the creek...
And, while our bridge is still stuck in the trees...
There's a solid plan to replace it very soon!
Because we refuse to let a creek flood keep us
from enjoying the other half of our property!
Army dad's been working non-stop to put the gardens back together...
Last evening, while I shopped for dinner...
He installed the new lighting fixtures around the koi pond...
And, I watched... Until a snake slithered up and chased me away!
Then, dinner was immediately put on hold while I arranged my new roses...
And busied myself with other things around the house until
my skin stopped crawling, and my appetite returned!
Honestly! Why can't all garden creatures be this lovely...
And non snake-like?
Yes... We're talking about you!
After dinner, and after trading my sandals for knee-high
boots, I ventured back out to the garden to see the new light
fixtures glowing and to take in the progress that's been made!
It's been a long week but...
We are getting there!
Click here to listen for yourself!


  1. So hard to see all the damage and all the sludgy mess left from the flood waters but your clean up is progressing at a great rate and I'm happy that your hearty hostas bounced back. Great shots of the hummingbird and other birds.
    Glad you managed to sell your cabinet for even more than you paid for it. Quick profit!
    With all that you've had on your plate this past week I'm surprised that you managed to find time to make dinners let alone that beautiful looking cake I see.
    P.S. Seeing a snake that size crawling around me would freak me out.

  2. I've been thinking of you all week....made me feel sad for you all and the neighbors...
    Things are starting to look sorry about your fish...
    Can't wait to see where you place your cake stands next! Congrats on selling the cabinet...
    You have such a beautiful spirit...and I so enjoy your blog and am sending hugs....

  3. Looking great! Congrats on the sale! Sorry about your koi. And for a few moments I felt as if I were sitting in your yard listening to all the sounds of nature along with your new wind chimes. I just know everything is going to be beautiful once again after Army Dad gets through with the cleanup and restoration of the gardens. So glad it wasn't any worse than it was. Looking forward to seeing what you choose for the cake stands.

  4. Oh my goodness! I'm so sorry for all the damage you received - I know how disheartening it must have been after all the hard work you put in on your garden and yard. I hope things are well on their way back to normal for you!


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