On Monday morning the sun came out.
We got up early...because it was light! Alas, the power had not come back on during the night. Drew was out playing in the mud at around 6:30 a.m. I am always excited to see the sun, but on this day, it was an unbelievable feeling. Because hot sun=water drying up.
We were so blessed during this ordeal. And it's kind of hard to say that because what does that mean for the families who lost everything? I don't know. But, we have a gas stove, and so, I was able to heat Emily's bottles and get them sterilized. I called my neighbor and suggested she clean out her freezer and bring over anything we could cook on the stove top. I couldn't believe how much food I had to throw away. She and I are both big couponers. All those freezer deals down the drain.
My mom struck out to see if she could find a way out of town. We joked that she was like the bird Noah sent out. If she didn't come back, we'd know it was dry! A few hours later she called to say she was still sitting on Highway 96 on the way to Franklin. It was the only way around Bellevue and everyone was trying to go that way. Just for reference, I can usually make it to Franklin in 20-25 minutes. We were praying she wouldn't run out of gas.
Drew and I took a walk. So many neighbors were out discussing bits of news they had heard from friends in other places. We speculated about roads opening and water safety and when the power might come back on. I have great neighbors and I have never been more thankful-knowing that if we needed anything someone would help. We walked to the front of the neighborhood. There are houses there that back right up to the creek. Somehow they were unscathed!!! Not one single house in the neighborhood had been touched by the flood. Amazing.
I called my neighbor again and asked if she wanted to go out driving around for a bit before we started cooking. She wanted to go see the preschool where her son goes each day. Reports were that there was massive flooding at the school. We laughed and joked on the way there. And then, what we saw, struck us dumb. We were speechless. On the roadway we both traveled every day there was water as far as the eye could see. In my mind's eye I knew that somewhere under all that water was a golf center. And an entire neighborhood.
One of the teachers from the preschool was there with her husband and their canoe. They had been delivering people to the rescue boats when the rescue boats could not reach certain homes. The current had become too strong, so they had to quit. And then I saw her. The woman who lives in the house with the school bus. When Drew was little he loved seeing school buses, and every time we passed this house we waved to the school bus. She was sitting on the curb, head in hands. Her home was flooded and she had just been pulled out by the rescue boat. The drive home was somber.
In all this time, I had not felt panicky. I was stocked up on formula. We had plenty of diapers. Plenty of food. And, if worse came to worse, we could walk to the store. But after seeing the lake on Old Harding Road, a knot started forming in my stomach. People were lined up four deep at the Kroger gas pumps for gas that would not be turned on for several hours. Were we going to run out of gas?? And, by the way, why did we even need gas when we couldn't go anywhere??
Lana and I cooked up a storm and our families ate the most random selection of food you have ever seen! We started filling up empty containers with water...just in case. My mom finally got some gas in her tank and off Highway 96. As the sun started setting, the flashlights and candles came out, camp was set back up and we crossed our fingers for the power to come back on.