Sunny South Beach Weekend
Happy Friday everyone!
Friday has a different feel to it--at least I think so. The sun seems just a little brighter as it streams in to touch my face and rouse me softly from sleep. As the day ticks along a sense of anticipation builds--that slight excitement you used to feel as a child at the final school bell on a Friday afternoon when the weekend stretched in a ribbon of endless possibilities before you and anything could happen. The expecation of time spent in pleasurable weekend pursuits and sleepy mornings when you wake up thinking you're late and then remember that it's the weekend... sheer bliss.
Saint John River at flood level
Unfortunately this is not going to be a breezy, carefree weekend for me. In a small corner of Maritime Canada, nestled in a river valley, lies a little place that I call my hometown. A shockingly blue river winds its way through some of the most beautiful mountains that you will find in that part of the world. A haven for bass fishermen and photographers, it glimmers enticingly during the summertime, reflects the amazing colours of the autumn leaves, and lies dormant under a pristine blanket of snow during the winter months. But it is spring when it becomes a deadly force.
Beautiful, Deadly ICE
During the spring thaw, inconceivable quantities of water and ice move through my hometown--sometimes the ice goes out smoothly and everyone breathes a sigh of relief. But some years, it lets go with a fury and grinds its way along the banks, driving huge chunks of ice high up onto the shores and catching up in ice jams that cause the water levels to rise to alarming levels. Sadly, this is one of those years.
Under Water--notice the water height on the houses
I got the news this morning that my town was under an evacuation order--via facebook, can you imagine? I found out about the evacuation before my family did, and they live directly in front of the river. The power of social media really is amazing.
I have spoken with my family, and they are now safely on higher ground, but the town is in lockdown and the roads into town are closed, as well as the bridge
that links the two sides of the community. It is frustrating to be sitting in the sunny south knowing what they are going through and I can't be there for moral support. I have personally been through countless 'almost' floods, as well as four actual
ones, and it is always stressful and emotional.
The worst flood in my lifetime was in 1987 and it deposited 5'3" above the main floor of our house. Yes, that's five feet and three inches
. Taller than my Mum.
Mum's building on the far left.... luckily she doesn't live there at the moment!
My town has now declared a state of emergency
. I've been on the internet and the phone with friends and family all day, and apparently it is worse than the 1987 flood when the ice swept away our train bridge and devastated the whole area. If you have never been through a flood, all I can tell you is that it is so frustrating to be sitting and waiting when you just wish you could do something. Anything. But at this point, there is nothing to do but wait. Wait for the water to subside. Wait for clearance to go back into town. Wait for the aftermath of nature in all its fury.
Wait for the hours of clean up and frustration... the tears and the hope.
All my love to everyone sitting and waiting it out... my prayers are with you all.