An Early Thaw

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Chore-time has been a bit… ummm… WET, lately.

I’d just finished taking care of the animals on Friday morning — and I was standing in the kitchen, dripping rainwater from my coat and hat, pulling off my muddy boots, when my little monkey toddled up to me and asked:

Dad, go on a ADVENTURE wiff me?”

She was dressed in the cutest little footie pajamas, and she was still rubbing the sleep out of her eyes, but I could tell from her mischievous little smile that she was ready for action.

“You want me to take you on an Adventure?

PEASE!” she shouted, her face totally lighting up. “PEASE, DAD!”

I glanced at the clock and frowned.

I was running late for work.

It kinda broke my heart and hers, but there just wasn’t time for a daddy-daughter adventure.

Not this morning, anyway…

Fortunately, Lindsey was standing right by me, and she was able to change the subject before the situation deteriorated into tears. (They don’t call ’em the “terrible twos” for nothing!)

With the little monkey distracted, I was able to quickly pull on my “dress shoes” (i.e. a slightly less muddy pair of hiking boots), grab a Tupperware container full of leftovers for lunch, say my goodbyes, and then rush out the door.

If only I’d known the adventure that awaited me about a half-mile down the road, maybe I would have taken my little girl with me — just to grant her wish…

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The dirt road was washing out, right before my very eyes!

As you probably already know, we’ve had some wild weather this winter. And now, thanks to an early thaw, things have gotten even wilder!

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Check out this DELUGE running across our road!

The further I drove, the worse the conditions got…

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Talk about erosion!

With all the rain and thawing snow, our road has been washing out more and more each day. But the real challenge was getting our poor old car to swim through the flippin’ lake that had formed near the highway!

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The water came up to the axles, but it’ll take more than THAT to stop our BUICK!

Once I had overcome that obstacle, it was pretty much smooth sailing (no pun intended) from there on out. It sure was a sobering sight though, looking at all the flooding…

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It’s almost like our poor little mountain valley had turned into one giant puddle almost overnight!

Rivers had swelled beyond their banks. Houses were wading in several inches of water. A lot of damage had been done already, with more rain and more thawing on the way…

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Crazy stuff!

As I drove past all the flooding on my way to work, I couldn’t help but feel a surge of gratitude for my family.

Y’see, after that brief bout of flooding back in January (when we were bailing water out of our window well for 25 hours straight), Lindsey’s parents and siblings all got together and bought us a sump pump — even though I insisted we didn’t need one.

I’d never actually used a sump pump before, but I was convinced that it couldn’t possibly help us in our situation.

(And I’m sure there was probably a little bit of the “I’m-a-MAN-and-I-can-take-care-of-my-own-things” pride involved too…)

But still, if my family was gonna go to all the trouble and expense of buying us a pump, I might as well try and use it, shouldn’t I?

If nothing else, I’d be able to prove that I was right.

I have to admit, though — I was dead WRONG!

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It took a bit of work to get stuff dug out and situated, but that little sump pump has been a real lifesaver!

I can’t even begin to explain how marvelous it is, simply plugging in that beautiful little contraption — and then being able to walk away, knowing that it’ll (probably) keep the house from flooding.

It gives such peace of mind!

Thank you, family!

But, as luck would have it, even with the help of that handy-dandy little pump, here I am once again, staying up way past my bedtime, to fight back floodwaters. This time, however, instead of water running down into our window well, it’s coming up from our basement.

(It just goes to show how much water we’re dealing with right now!)

It’s currently 2:36am on Saturday morning, and I’m slouching exhaustedly on our living room couch. All the lights are off; Lindsey and the munchkin are fast asleep; and I’ve got about 10 minutes or so to rest.

10 beautiful minutes…

When my 10 minutes are up, I’ll have to go man the shop-vac again.

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We’ve got water seeping up through the foundation in our root cellar.

In the meantime though, I’m gonna kick up my feet, make myself comfortable, and enjoy a nice chocolate chip cookie! (Just don’t go telling our little monkey about it — it’s against the rules to eat food on the couch).

Yep, all things considered, I’m having a much nicer time, this go-around.

I’ve got a soft, cushy seat, dry clothes, cookies… What more could you ask for? At least I don’t have to go outside in the rain and the muck to vacuum up floodwater; the sump pump is doing a fantastic job of keeping things out of our window well.

If I had to fight water on both fronts, I’m pretty sure I’d be pulling my hair out by now…

[Yawn]

Sorry about that.

[Looks down at watch]
[Realizes it’s now nearly 3 o’clock in the morning]

Gosh! I was gonna tell you a bit more about my late-night shop-vac adventures, but I’m gettin’ pretty tired all of a sudden.

Besides, my 10 minutes is up, so I best be heading downstairs again…

After I finish with the vacuuming, I think I’m gonna go to bed. For a little while anyway…

[YAWN!]

G’Night y’all!

(Or would it be “Good Morning”?)

I dunno.

Who cares?

We’ll talk at you later. In the meantime, watch out for those flood areas!

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