Tuesday, December 28, 2010

And away we go!

The day after Christmas we packed our car (after thoroughly sucking up the flood water from the floors!), and headed out....








Into the mountains.  Passing falling rocks signs do not make me feel good here....


Of course, it didn't bother everyone...



We drove and drove for six hours...


Through the California desert.


To my father's condo in Phoenix, Arizona.  Seven months have passed since the last time we checked on it.  This was apparently way too long!  When we arrived at 9pm we found the place had been burglarized.  The TV was gone, the couch was gone, the bed was gone.... So many things including, a much needed coffee maker for the next morning!  We bought air beds at Walmart and called the police, then we spent some time working on the over grown garden the next day....


And collecting lemons from the tree...


As I pondered making lemonade the girls ate them up!


After securing the condo and leaving a light on, we headed north to meet up with family...


Driving in the mountains is amazing around here!


This is a rest stop on the way!


Even with the hat on I still got a sunburn!



Just 2 hours and we were in Cottonwood!


Where we finally met Mike's brand new first cousin Roy Peter!


Together we headed over to Sedona to hike in Red Rock Park...


This is a beautiful region.


Chloe in her cow hat enjoying the scenery!



We hiked to the Wheel House.


Still keeping my hat on!


The pretty little creek...


Run to the river!


I'm not running.


Mike got to hold the baby!


Balanced rocks in the woods.


An amazing day in an amazing place!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Yesterday and today

Kent Brockman: "So Professor: would you say that now is the time for everyone to panic?"
Professor:"Yes, I would, Kent"

-The Simpsons

As the rain came down yesterday morning, something else descended on this house...cabin fever! So as soon as a break came in the storm, I took Phoebe and Naomi out for a walk around.  We headed out to the road but as you can see it was now a river....


Without a dry sidewalk to walk on we headed over to the pedestrian walkway behind our building.  When we reached Mission Center Road we saw that the river was claiming it back.  


As you can see that porsche was now a black unidentifiable object.  A lot of people were there taking pictures including the Channel 10 news station.


They filmed us all, especially Naomi who decided the huge new waterfall was perfect for "Pooh Sticks".


You can't tell so much in this photo but she just tossed a stick in.


Phoebe watched it drift off... After this we headed back.  It seemed only 15 minutes after getting back to the condo that my friend, Avi showed up at our door.  She lives upstairs with her family and she wanted to know how we were. As I stepped out in the hall to talk with her I heard the alarms blaring through the building.
"What's going on?!"
"People are trapped in the elevator!  The fire department is coming!!  If they can get here!"
"Oh no!"
Then she explained that the garage was filling quickly downstairs. Her car is down there, and so was ours.  It didn't seem safe to go down so she led me and the girls to a tiny window where we could crouch down and see.  Sure enough the cars were in several feet of water. 

After this we felt glum and stressed out so we headed to a restaurant in walking distance and had lunch. Around 3pm the management came by with "Rules and an update"....
No going in the elevators. 
No going in the garage.
San Diego Gas and Electric is coming in the next 2 hours to determine if power must be shut off.
Evacuation is not mandatory at this time, but the worst part of the storm is yet to hit us in the next few hours.

They left off the "Have a nice day" part.  Probably a good idea.  Somewhat panicked now, I called friends and family to see if anyone could drive us or put us up.  I told the girls to pack and put anything they feel is valuable off the floor.  Then we began to research hotels that take pets while we watched on the news people being rescued in inflatable rafts from a hotel up the street.  For hours we saw residents leaving on foot through the gate.  We decided to wait till it was "mandatory", and I kept the girls busy wrapping Christmas gifts.

By 6pm or so it had stopped raining and the water began to go down in the garage.  By 9pm it was low enough that we could check our car.... It started!!!  It drizzled a bit around midnight, but by morning it was over.

This morning we went out to check the damage....



A lot of vehicles were in the driveway, as there's a lot of clean up to do.


Many vehicles were towed out of the garage this morning, we heard that several were totaled.


There's still a lot of water over by this sign, but it's much lower.


This way is still a mess.


This car was completely submerged yesterday, but no one has come yet to tow it off.


Back up on Mission Center Road, the waterfall is gone, as is the porsche.


These men had a little orange float on a string and a computer. Not sure what that was about, but it looked important and official so we took a picture!


This is all the debris, or "river vomit" as I like to call it, on the sidewalk.




There's still water and A LOT of mess, but things could have gone much worse for us. In the end we're thankful.  Have a wonderful holiday and a Merry Christmas to you all.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The River Runs Through It.....

By "river" I mean the San Diego river and by "through it" I'm referring to our condo... Well not quite...yet.


It's been raining for a few days here which is all it takes to flood our area at the bottom of a valley at sea level.  Here are some photos we've been gathering.


This is  about one hundred feet from our driveway on Tuesday afternoon...



This is the same sign this morning after sun rise.


This car is owned by a local idiot who drove through police barriers and had to be rescued.  I saw them attempt to pull out the car, even the tow truck couldn't get in there.  This clever driver also left his blinkers on so the battery is sure to be dead... Though I expect that's the least of this car's problems at the moment.


This is where the pedestrian path ends that runs past our condo and along the river.


YAY! We live in a "State of Emergency"!


This is the same spot this morning around 7am, as you can see the water is much higher on the sign.


This is a different local idiot who also drove through police barriers.


He was luckier and the tow truck pulled him out.  This was on Tuesday afternoon so since he was an idiot sooner his car was rescued.


So this morning or rather sometime in the night the owner of this lovely porsche decided to take his place in the same intersection.  The river is almost level with the road and flowing like rapids across the street right now.


Same spot from the other side of the street.  This a huge busy street most of the time (Mission Center Road), but right now it's not passable so it's easy to walk around with a camera.


This is directly in front of our condominium complex.


They've sandbagged our garage door gate.


As you can see our driveway is filling up.



We went downstairs at 7:00am and saw that the sand bags had just breached.  There's nothing we can do, all I have is an open bag of cat litter.  We did chat with a resident who had moved his car to park on the street last night.  He thought it would be safer for his car but now it was under several feet of water.


20 minutes later we saw him attempt to move his car.  I don't blame him, how could it be any worse?


Here he is making waves!  We stood on the sidewalk cheering!


And.... HE MADE IT!!!  


Now I just hope our car makes it down in the basement.  At least it's an SUV and is higher off the ground.  I'm worried though, it's supposed to keep raining all day.  Nothing more to do here, but pile towels against the door!  
"People are willing to take these extraordinary chances to become writers, musicians, or painters, and because of them, we have a culture. If this ever stops, our culture will die, because most of our culture, in fact, has been created by people that got paid nothing for it--people like Edgar Allan Poe, Vincent Van Gogh or Mozart."-Kurt Vonnegut

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