Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Raindrops are falling......

Hi there, Bloggers.
I know I should provide some details of our adventures over the past wet and woolly weekend, but really, the things we did, and how we were affected just seem so miniscule and unimportant in the face of the on-going dramas that people have been through, and are living with now.
It started raining up here on Wednesday night, and picked up in intensity on Thursday. GG was supposed to drive up here on Thursday night, so that we could attend the funeral of a friend on Friday afternoon, then drive down to Sydney so that she could attend a concert by the bands "Emery" and "Underoath". I was getting very nervous of her driving up in such poor conditions, and didn't sleep well at all on Thursday night. I was greatly relieved when she rang me, very upset, but resigned to not coming up for Linda's funeral. I still planned to take her to Sydney, though. The two big kids had tickets to the "Come Together" Festival at Sydney's Luna Park on Saturday.

Beloved didn't think that he would be at work very long either. I dropped the boys off at the bus stop in the pouring rain at 7.50am. At 9.30, there was a phone call from Scorpaboy realying that they were to be sent home on buses at 10am. There was a lot of whooping and hollering in the background. This is the the first time that this had happened to our kids in the 5 years that we have lived here. Beloved rang to tell me that he would be home as well. The roads were cut between Muswellbrook and here, so it took a while to get around the un-flooded back roads. Actually the roads that are passable in flood times are the ones that be swallowed up in the new Anvil Hill Mining Development.....

As I've said before, it takes 20 minutes to travel from here to town. On Friday, it took Beloved well over an hour. And this kids took even longer. Beloved drove the family wagon into the yard, stepped put with a funny look on his face and said; " I didn't mean to park here; I'm bogged...". So he pulled it out with the ute, and I parked it near the shed. He then drove the ute around the block, and parked it in the side lane under the trees... I was thinking to myself "I wouldn't park there..."... and you guessed it; He was bogged!!!!!!! So, he went over and got Rod from across the road to tow him out..... then went to pick up the kids from the bus stop.

We were originally taking the boys motorbiking in Newie on Sunday, but decided ti would probably be too wet....... We packed the car up, and showered to get warm and dry, and at my suggestion, Beloved parked the wagon out the front so that we could walk straight off the verandah, down tha path and into the car, keeping the mud in the car to a minimum. I thought that he would park on the raod, but Beloved parked on the nature strip out the front. Denamn was fast turning into an island, and we wanted to leave before it was too late, so he harrassed the boys to hurry up, climbed into the car .... AND WE WERE BOGGED!!!!!! UP TO THE AXLES.... AGAIN!!!!!!!!.
This time, the ute just wouldn't do the job. We had to get Gary, with his 4WD and winch, to drag us out of the sucking (that's not a typo) mud. We dug out around the tyres, and placed 3 bricks into the holes; these have disappeared. It was after 1pm before we left for Newie. But the time it took was a good thing. We missed flash flooding at Jerry's Plains, and between Branxton and Greta. And we made it to NanandPop's before things became really bad. It took us 3 and a half hours to do a 2 hour trip. The F3 was closed, and the traffic was being diverted down the old Pacific Highway. It was just after 4pm, dark, and we narrowly missed a small sedan careering into us after it hit an enormous puddle of water near Blaxlands road at Cardiff. It was travelling too fast, and sideways at the time. Beloved reckoned he could see the fear in the young male driver's eyes.....
I advised Beloved that there was no way that we were going to travel down the winding, single-lane highway in all the traffic after dark; GG would just have to miss her concert. It was just too dangerous.
It was a very wise decision.

We would have been travelling down that road when it collapsed.....

We had a quiet dinner at Nanandpop's, courtesy of the Chinese restaurant and fish and chip shop at Jewellstown Plaza. Power was out all over the place, and roads cut, but Nanandpop were largely unscathed, except for GG's room flooding again. They never lost their phone or power.

Improved weather on Saturday morning saw us heading off to Sydney, but the first stop was at Bridgestone Tyres, as we had to replace the two tyres we had damaged when we were bogged. The kids and I went for a walk around Belmont while we waited. The power supply was patchy around Belmont. The lake had extended it's shoreline across the road into people's yards, and the jetty had disappeared. The barbecues were almost underwater. The stormwater drains had backed up, and roads were blocked in many places. But everyone seemed to be in good humour. I grew up in Belmont. I don't ever remember seeing it so consumed by water, not even in the big storm of 1974, when the "Sygna" ended up on Stockton Beach.

So we headed off to Sydney. We had a good day. It was wet, but it wasn't really a problem. The police helicopter was still searching for the family at Somersby when we drove down the freeway. We dropped the big kids off at luna Park at 10.45am. Beloved, Vegeboy and I went to "Texas Productions", Scorpaboy's bike sponsor's factory, then to Haymarket, and saw "Spiderman 3" at the movies. Don't rush to see it. Tobey Maguire, the actor who plays Spiderman, actually started to annoy me a bit. And Kirsten Dunst's character, Mary Jane, was so needy....... We had tea at a great little Italian restaurant at Naremburn with Paul and Karen, then went back to their house to watch TV while the big kids had fun until 11pm. Paul and Karen are the owners of "Texas Productions". I hadn't met Karen before. She is intelligent, articulate, hyperactive and fun. As I would have expected of a partner of Paul.

We arrived home to Nanandpop's just after 1am. The twin Service stations on the freeway were still closed, but the 24hr garage at Doyalson was open, so we had a break, and I drove from there.

Sunday, we emptied out GG's room so it could dry, then we were terrrible rubber-necks, and went for a drive around Newcastle and suburbs. Beloved's sister lives in New Lambton, and they werte spared any problems, but the park across the road looked a bit sad, and the damage from the stormwater drains around them was evident. When we drove down on Friday afternoon, we really had no idea how bad things were. We called in to see Beloved's parents at Elermore Vale. His dad had been rushed off to the John Hunter Hospital by ambulance on Friday night just after the power went out. He was suffering from the same bladder issues as Romy's Man, and just can't be left in such an uncomfortable state. He and Val were both ok when we called in on Sunday afternoon, and things don't look any different where they live.

It's odd, isn't it?

We had to stay in Newcastle until just before lunchtime on Monday, when the floodwaters on the highway receded. There are lakes in so many un-expected places at the moment. It was back to life as usual today, but many stories ahve been exchanged. Football training has been cancelled, but Vegeboy isn't playing this weekend anyway...

He's going to the Snowy Mountains for 4 days.........

We really are very lucky, aren't we?
It really does all seem so unimportant now.......


It was just an island up here for a few days... but we're on level 3 water restrictions now, due to the poor water quality of the Hunter River, and the effect that this has on our pump stations.....

I hope that all is on the improve for those that have been affected by the influence of Mother Nature.

Love to you all, and please stay safe.

Bloggie ^_^



5 comments:

poody said...

wow sounds like an adventure just to get home and back for you and yours! Where I grew up the dirt is red and like clay so when it rains it is so easy to bog down!

Anchell said...

Goodness! It was a rather interesting weekend wasnt it. Thank goodness you decided to miss that concert! xxx

Kris said...

I was wondering about you when i saw all that stuff on the news! May you get un-bogged in a hurry. Feel free to send some of the washy stuff this way...we're up to our ears in the biggest drought in history!

Kristy-Lee said...

Thank goodness you didnt do that drive on the old pacific highway!

Getting bogged is not the most fun ever is it..... funny later, but NOT at the time.

x

Cyndy said...

Yep, someone certainly loves us....