Tuesday, March 16, 2010

bailing, bailing

With all this rain, I heard on the radio, that if you don't have a flooded basement, you know someone who does. Check, it's my folks.

Water started pouring in 10 PM two nights ago. They tried in vain to get the situation under control. Then they called my brother around 11. The three of them were up all night, vacuuming and bailing as the water level continued to rise.

Yesterday AM I did the usual daughterly check in call, only to hear my mother cry, "The basement is flooded. Your father has been up all night."

"I'll be over." Which was not as instantaneous as it seems. We don't live in neighboring towns, never mind, neighboring developments. I got the girls off to school, and took off with two sap buckets. Figuring I could only carry 4 gallons of sap at a time -- two buckets was all I would need.

My brother, who had gone home to get dry clothes, stopped on his way back at Lowes. Where he picked up 3 sump pumps: two submersible models and one floor model. I type this to show which of us is a more high tech thinker... Of course the buckets did come in handy -- but we would have been rowing around in boats if the water level was left to buckets and bailing.

The water level dropped, but did not go away. The basement was still leaking. One breach resembled stream cutting out from under a stair. Another, in another part of the basement was bubbling up from a crack in the floor and another was behind some shelving. If we didn't keep after it, the water would soon be as high or higher than it was. The bailing and vacuuming would not end until the water table dropped.

We worked until I had to get back for the end of school, and to rescue the pot roast that had been left in the oven at 210 all day long. It was delicious. Did the usual Monday afternoon run around, ate dinner, and made the call to see if they needed me back. After all I couldn't imagine them partying on without me.

The ride back was crazy. The rain had turned to ice. I was one of the last cars to traverse Route 9 before they closed it due to flooding. I kept wondering if this was the right thing to do. Would I be able to get back home for the morning school thing? The radio kept reporting that the rain would be stopping. I had my hopes pinned on their being right.

We partied on for another 3 hours. Feeding the sump pump, mopping up and vacuuming the water as it bubbled up through the floor. A dry floor just outside our grasp -- I had to leave my brother and father again. "I'll call tomorrow."

And as I drove away -- the rain had indeed stopped, I wondered if they would venture anywhere near a pillow. And if they did, how high would the water be when they awoke.


Tammy H. said...

Patty sounds like your parents have had a great couple days. We haven't seen that rain here...yet. I am sure that it is coming.

Hope that they see a drier basement soon. And a good night's sleep.

MamaDee said...

Rob can commiserate with you... while emptying his dad's basement yesterday, he got a call from Dibbie, so headed there after... around 10pm... ugh. He didn't finish bailing her out until 2ish. What a pain, huh? I'm glad to see some sunshine in the forecast - hopefully your folks' basement will get a chance to dry out.