Wednesday, June 08, 2005

When it Rains, it Floods.

Last year at this time I was a single mom living in a two-bedroom apartment with three children.

Last year at this time I felt the devastation of having our living space flooded. While we slept the rain overtook our living room. Many of our books were destroyed, thankfully we did not lose very many of our belongings.

As much as it was good news that our things weren't totally destroyed, we had a hard time with our apartment complex in getting our "home" back to inhabital conditions. Meaning; everything that was in the living room was shoved into the already crowded dining space. Bare concrete was showing, and the smell of mildew permeated everything. We essentially had a 2x4 walk space between our bedrooms and the bathroom, and a narrow walk between the front door, the kitchen, and our bedrooms.

Suffice it to say, it was horrible. We couldn't eat dinner at our own place. We lived like this for two weeks. And even after the carpet was replaced, it smelled like dirty water.

Why did our apartment flood? Well, in Michigan, in the Spring and sometimes at the end of summer we get what is called Scorching Hot Weather followed by Torrential Rains. They last for a mere 15 minutes to maybe a 1/2 hour, but the devastation is unmistakable. It's great fun.

Our apartment was "below ground" level, and because the electricty had gone out, the drainage pump no longer worked...hence every kind of nasty thing that can be found in drainage water had found it's way into our home.

This of course happens during the time that I am trying to plan a wedding, go to school, and work full time. Like I said...great fun.

After many days arguing with our landlord, I was finally able to get them to allow us to move to a different unit. This time a 4 bedroom town house. Blessing in disguise? Maybe. We had to pay an extra $1000, straight from our wedding fund, in order to make the move.

Certainly the townhouse is located on higher ground...I determined this the first moment I looked the place over. So that was important.

We like our place well enough, but after a year we are ready to leave...which has nothing to do with our place and everything to do with our neighbors habit of setting off fireworks at 3:00 AM, and having arguments outside our window at 4:00 AM.

So, we will stay one more year, working it out and hopefully working towards that house we so desperately want. Where we will go...we don't know. Moving is such a huge thing. We do agree that we will have to hire movers this time around. Considering the way that the last move occured, I am very okay with the added expense.

So, my point to all of this is actually the rain...because today it happened again. No, not the flooding...but the rain. It came down in torrents. Quite literally soaking everything within a few seconds.

This also happened to be the day that I promised the children I would go summer clothes shopping with them. And they were not swayed by the rain. Literally, it came down in sheets of water that I could barely see through. In the two seconds it took me to get to my car I was soaked through...and learned that I had left my window open.

The kids were drenched, thankfully it wasn't a particularly cold rain.

But they were determined, and I had promised. They wanted to go shopping...even Zac, which is unusual for him. Probably the lure of new shoes...

As we pulled out of our complex, I had to drive through at least 14 inches of standing water that had accumulated in the road right outside our townhouse. A bright pink pool raft floated by. It was surreal, it was wet, and it was thundering and lightening all over...but at least it was not in our living room.

Definitely a blessing.


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