Monday, September 16, 2013

Guess I'm Not a Meteorologist

So after my last post, when I said that it was supposed to get a bit sunnier and less rainy, Boulder and the surrounding areas got flooded. Heh. Whoops. Too bad my idiotic wishes aren't powerful enough to create better weather patterns.

It rained for about four days straight, and the result is the kind of flooding that apparently only comes around once every hundred years or so. As I've mentioned before, David and I live in Sunshine Canyon, right in the middle of the burn zone from the 2010 Four Mile fire. It's a blessing, really, that the house burned down then, since during the rebuild we were very diligent about flood prevention and water diversion. So, our house is just fine. Our neighbors that live below us, however, weren't so lucky:

Yikes, right? Apparently there are still so many people who need evacuating in various parts of Boulder County that today the National Guard is mounting the biggest aerial rescue mission since Hurricane Katrina.

I should add, just in case it's not obvious, that the "river" you see in the photos above wasn't there last week. In fact, a road was there last week. I used to ride my bike up it.

So things are a bit kooky around these parts lately. On Thursday morning we took in two people who hiked out of Four Mile Canyon to our house since a dislodged propane tank had begun spewing propane in their front yard. They stayed with us for two days and have since been able to get to town to friends and family. All that I will say about that situation is that four days of rain + excessive amounts of dirt and mud inside and outside the house + two stranded house guests + a lack of power = not a good situation for a woman expecting to give birth in two weeks. Nesting? Not so much. Sigh. I had just about the worst panic attack in the middle of the night on Thursday, worrying about if they would open our road so we could get to town, if our evacuees would need to stay indefinitely, if I'd go into labor and have to labor at home while we had guests.

Since our water comes from our well and necessitates a pump we are also without water. Thus, no showers and no dish washing. Luckily we can flush our toilets with the water that has been filling up Haruki's outdoor doggy pool. But our house is still a disaster area and it feels like my efforts to get everything together for baby are utterly stalled. I had actually hired a cleaning person to come tomorrow to do a big big deep clean before the baby comes, but with no power we had to postpone.

Oh well. It could be a lot worse, right? Hopefully Xcel will fix the power today and I can veg out and de-stress with some Monday Night Football.

And, on the bright side, Haruki sure did have fun running in the streams of water that miraculously appeared all around our house. Here are a few shots of the new landscape. I should add again that everywhere you see water in these pictures is new, i.e. water didn't used to be there.

*How would you "deal" if you were without electricity or water for four days?


  1. YIKES! Those pictures are intense. I didn't really grasp the gravity of the situation in Boulder until I heard the death count. Wait, people died?! Stay safe!

  2. Wow. I don't know if it's just because I know a few people in CO and therefore I pay more attention there than elsewhere.... but maybe all you guys should move to someplace a little less volatile, like the slope of that mountain in Mordor in Lord of the Rings.

    There are a lot of things we're unprepared for... but four days with no power wouldn't affect us much. I have gasoline safely stored for the generator to go a lot longer than that for the well pump and hot showers. We have a lot of storage food on hand to go longer than four days. When we run out of generator fuel, we have a lot of bottled water put away, then we could go a long time drinking from rain barrels and hot tub thanks to our Big Berkey water filter. I have two cords of wood split behind our house for our wood stove and probably four cords unsplit. That will keep us and our meals warm. Plus oil lamps, lanterns, rechargeable batteries with a larger battery bank, etc, etc.... and a full bottle of Maker's Mark after the PBR runs out the first night.

    If you guys were interested in learning how to put a little back for these types of situations, I'd be more than happy to answer questions and help you along. In fact, I wrote a couple short primers for Jo's blog on water and food storage. With almost no effort and no $$$, a week's power outage is pretty easy preparation.

    I hope you guys will be back to normal soon!

    1. The power is back on now and I'd say we did just fine without it. I think the stress on my part was more due to our impending arrival than the lack of power. Apparently I'm hardwired to become anxious if I can't secure a safe place to birth my baby; sadly, this reminds me a lot of the behavior I've seen female dogs exhibit while in labor at the Humane Society. It's true--we are just animals who happen to carry iPhones:-)
      P.S. It sounds like you should audition for a wilderness reality show. I would totally watch and cheer you on!