Thursday, August 25, 2016

August 12, 2016 and The Rain Came Down

It started early Friday morning. That would be the 11th of August. Carrie had spent the night. My foot surgery was now 3 days in the past and I was mobile  by use of a knee walker. Everything I do since that surgery now takes triple time. Carrie and I had rehearsed this new development and she knew she would be responsible for assisting her own school preparations. I had her lay out her school uniform, her socks, shoes and backpack. We were prepared.
Friday morning and as planned, I rolled to her bedroom on the knee scooter and roused her to start her day. Carrie is very compliant. She dressed, refused breakfast and grabbed her book bag and lunch bag as we headed for the car. Standing in the carport, we looked out into the pouring rain. Of course my car was not on the carport but parked out in the rain.
Getting into the car was going to take some effort. I would have to roll myself to the passenger side, get the door open, maneuver the scooter as close to the passenger seat as possible, slide off the scooter on one leg, hoisting that leg over the scooter while picking up my useless left foot and dragging it into the car all the while the rain is a deluge. This wasn't going to go well. Carrie had already unlocked the car and tossed in her book bag and lunch bag while trying to keep dry beneath an umbrella she grasped in one hand. Unsuccessful attempt at keeping dry, we decided to go back into the house and discuss a new plan of action while she got a new uniform shirt and relief herself of the drenched one she now wore.
By this time, I was contemplating just skipping the whole school experience. The husband walked into the room and announced that all the Lafayette Parish schools were closed. Carrie was back into her pajamas and settled in with the laptop before I could get my one shoe off. (I can't wear a shoe on the surgery foot side).

It rained and rained and rained. Throughout the day, into the night and the next day, the rain came down. This rain was not in droplets but in sheets. The coolies filled up, the road became invisible and the water crept toward homes and businesses. Reports were coming in of houses inundated with water. Eight inches in the homes, then 3 ft. with automobiles submerged and power lines down and the rain kept coming down.
What started Friday has now maintained it's grip on the southwestern part of Louisiana. Homes are ruined. It appears this is an historic flood, not seen since the early 40's. Records are being broke for water levels and flood levels. 
We are mostly home bound with most of the roads in the area closed and impassable. The local TV stations broadcast videos of all the water and where shelters are open.
I watched as boats went in to the big new hotel on Pinhook Street to rescue the people staying there. The cars they used to get to shelter from this storm were now only visible by the rooftops. The locals were floating toward the hotel in their boats to rescue.
By Sunday the streets were lined with household furnishings, slabs of broken soaked sheetrock which once defined living spaces in the houses that flooded. Mattresses, sinks, cabinets and clothes left in waist high piles; boats and canoes beached now that only yesterday were pulling people from their homes, the cleanup has begun.
Carrie will be spending the next days In my home. The daughter's home and car were underwater. I mourn the fact that I cannot be much help to anyone during this time. I'm bound to the knee scooter waiting for healing from foot surgery. I watch the news reports and view the devastation around me while being extremely thankful my home stayed dry.
FEMA has already been activated and daily notices of the parishes awarded help has been broadcast informing flood victims of where to find help. It's going to be a touch couple of months coming up for the town of Lafayette and the state of Louisiana because the Rain Came Down.

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