Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Storm Desmond.

Desmond Decker cheered people up with his music; Desmond's,  the TV show about the barber shop in Peckham, cheered people up with its comedy; Desmond Lynam, the sports presenter has cheered housewives up for erm reasons unknown and Desmond Tutu cheered people's hearts all over the world with his peaceful messages. 

Storm Desmond is none of the above. Nothing cheery about storm damage where one ( i.e. me ) discovers that one's roof isn't perhaps as watertight as it once was. Nothing cheery about the whole city where you live being flooded. Nothing cheery with being plunged into darkness on Saturday night about 10pm. 

Mind you, I've got off lightly. The worst thing for me was having no electricity for days. And, gasp, no internet ! 
I'm all electric here. No land line, no mobile signal. Nothing. Effectively cut off from the world! No way of getting in touch with Miss 21 to check she was safe. All the roads were closed due to flooding so no way of getting around to check on other family. Hardly the hardships that people fleeing wars etc have to endure, but it's been an odd few days! 
Apart from 
DO NOT OPEN THE FREEZERS 
stress it's been quite lovely! On Sunday morning, we set off to go see the river to discover everyone else had done the same. Even though you can't see them here! It was teeming with folks. 
The water level had dropped dramatically here, the night before you could not see the grass and the river was over the top of the railings. 
You can normally see the bottom feet of those arches and you can see the sludge left on the path. What this doesn't show is how fast it was still flowing. This bridge ( the main route into town ) had to be closed on the Saturday night until Monday afternoon.
Here's a shot of the bridge nicked off google that shows the water level at normal high tide 
The water came right up to the trees over the grass. 

People were talking to each other and I discovered that the young man who has lived in the flat across from me for five years, is called Phillip. I know where he works, I know where his mum lives etc! 

So as my oven is all electric I was cooking on the camping stove! We had sausage and eggs on Sunday teatime, chicken curry and rice on Monday teatime and I made Mince n tatties last night. 

As I write ( on my mobile 3G) I have power but no internet. So I'm going to go bake a loaf of bread as the shops are stripped bare of basic provisions - although most routes are now clear, so deliveries can get through now. 

It was UBER ambient in my lounge on these long dark evenings! We were so relaxed. I put it down to the deployment of ALL of my scented tealights, votives and candles!! 
The photos don't do it justice how cosy it was. Luckily we stayed warm with our coal fire and it wasn't actually that cold outside. 
We all gathered together ( well, me, the HG and Mr 18 ) and chatted for hours. We reminisced about his childhood and I was quizzing him over such things as when he stopped believing in Father Christmas. We all went to bed before 9pm too! I didn't miss the TV at all. I did miss the convenience electricity gives you. But we managed. 
I went into work on Monday ( school was shut to children ) to view the storm damage - the roof had blown off! Ok, a small part had collapsed and water had poured in. School was closed Tuesday and today. Mainly due to the unreliability of the power. 
The weather forecast today isn't good after two relatively mild dry days. We've 12 hours of heavy rain and gale force winds to look forward to. 

The devastation is widespread to the South Lakes and little villages just south of me. Businesses ruined. People's homes wrecked. 
Some of it could have been avoided. I might dip my toe in to a little puddle of controversy here, but if you build homes on flood plains, people buy them, then complain when they get flooded. It ain't rocket science, low lying flat land next to a river is going to get flooded if said river bursts it's banks. Tut tut. 
Fortunately I'm not on a flood plain. If I was ever flooded, then it'd have to had been a biblical event and the devastation would be a lot worse. 

Thank you and hello to new commenters! I hope future posts are as engaging!! If not, read the blog backwards!  I'll be along a blog visiting and replying later on today. Now that the power is back I'm going to risk doing a wash! Hopefully I'll be back at work tomorrow. I know I might whinge about having to go, but I've toooooo much to do, I miss the kids- I cannot WAIT to hear them tell me their experiences of the floods and power cuts! 
My tree is still not up but I did write some more Christmas Cards yesterday. I got my overseas ones posted and I might wrap the few bits I've managed to get so far, in front of a Christmas film this afternoon!  

Did Storm Desmond get you??

That's all for now! 
Lots of love from
Rachel *typing in electrical light* Radiostar xx 

PS. This made me chuckle.someone had written about the Prime Minister arriving in the region. This photo was posted with the caption underneath!!! 
ARE WE NOT SUFFERING ENOUGH???




24 comments:

  1. I'm glad you escaped the worst of it....hope all your freezer food survived! The candles look lovely. It's amazing just how cut off we feel with no technology.....quite sad really when you think about it. But after the initial wondering of 'how on earth did people manage with no phone/internet/leccy years ago?!', it actually feels quite nice to just sit and talk by candle and firelight. For a short time anyhow! Fortunately, it's only happened to us a couple of times. Desmond didn't affect us much at all down here in Somerset, it's been windy (but then it quite often is anyway), but we've not had much rain to speak of. Those poor people in Cumbria are suffering just like our Somerset Levels did last year, I do feel for them.

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    1. My freezer was absolutely fine. I am so glad all I escaped with was a damaged bit of bedroom ceiling and no power.

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  2. Oh, gosh, that's really not wonderful, is it? We got high winds and some heavy rain but nothing much really.

    I'm very sorry you were so badly hit. Have you been able to get your roof repaired? And what about the school? Was the roof damage extensive?

    I do agree with you about where houses are built. There's an area here that is prone to flooding and they've build houses on it. Personally I wouldn't touch them although they are lovely buildings but they have sold. I wonder if that's because the buyers didn't know or because they thought it worth the risk.

    Have a restful day off and hoping things settle quickly.

    J x

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    1. School is repaired and the power has lasted since 4.30pm last night now so fingers crossed we get back!

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    2. Fingers crossed indeed. Not a good time of year to be off.

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  3. I was thinking of you! My brother lives nearby and I knew he had no electricity. Glad to read you are all ok. We are unfortunately in one of the worst affected areas. We have lost our car but other than some 'leakage' the house is ok. Jack's parents not so lucky. X

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    1. I've been thinking of you too Jules. Are you all coping? Xxx Did you car get washed away?

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    2. Not quite. But it had water up to the stearing wheel with Jack in it!!! We're doing ok thanks.

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  4. I really feel for all the people who are affected by this terrible flooding, yet again. Just wish there was an answer. I suppose there is so much pressure to provide housing that quick fixes are sought, cheap land used and never mind the consequences. Glad you are safe and more or less dry. Hope you get your roof fixed quickly.

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    1. Thanks Annabeth. I think what was worse was missing all the news showing how bad it was BC we had no power! Quite literally, in the dark.

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  5. We have been so lucky here in our little corner of Staffordshire. We've had a couple of days with high winds and some rain but not as bad as some parts. My heart goes out to all the people who have been flooded out of their homes.
    Your room looks really cosy. We have a coal fire too and I love my candles. I collect them all through the year so that I have lots to burn come autumn/winter.
    Have a good day-x-

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    1. I usually buy them in big batches as I go through phases of having them lit!

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  6. Nothing weather related happened here but the news pictures were awful, so sad to see people's houses ruined. Our electric was off for a week in the 1987 hurricane and we had no idea how much damage was done everywhere because of not seeing TV. I hope all your damage is soon sorted.

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    1. It is scary when you have no way of finding out what's going on. The damage will get sorted eventually!!

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  7. I was wondering why I hadn't seen you for a few days - so glad to hear that you didn't suffer too much damage, it has been so sad watching the news with homes and businesses ruined. Your candles all looked lovely - sliver lining and all that - good to have you back!

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  8. I'm glad you stayed dry, I can't imagine being flooded with all that dirty water inside your home. We are dry in the South East, but family live in Somerset where they were flooded almost 2 years ago.

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    1. It must be the worst feeling ever really.

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  9. Apart from Gale force winds and a lot of rain we have been lucky here in County Durham, my heart goes out to all those that were affected by flooding how awful. I was just wondering what I would do if my electricity went off (it did flicker on and off a couple of times) because I'm all electricity too, I think the worst thing for me would be no internet and not being able to make a cup of tea. I had to laugh at that caption. I hope your roof gets sorted soon :)

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    1. Cheers!! The first cup of tea we had on the Sunday afternoon was pure bliss!

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  10. I feel so sorry for everybody affected by the floods. When I'm watching the news and it's the second or third time it's happened my heart bleeds for them. The older generation get me the most, who wants to be dealing with all that let alone at that age. So sad. Glad you've got away with relatively minor damage. I'm sure your positive outlook and sense of humour has helped you get through the past few days. Your room looks really inviting. All snug and cosy. That's the trouble with not being able to get into work. First day is all excitement and whoppee a day off, after that you start thinking about everything that's piling up and waiting for you on your return. Bet your children will be full of stories when they return and keep you in blog posts for weeks to come haha. xx

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    1. Not even had chance to ask them properly! One boy said he'd lived off cornflakes for three days!!

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  11. great pictures. Glad you were ok. We were ok too and managed to visit M in hospital but my friend who has a wheelchair bound husband didn't fare too well. Their newly decorated bungalow was flooded with 3' of water and have lost everthing. The thing she is most devistated about is her wedding photo which they hadn't got to rehanging. There are many more in the same boat(no pun)and I feel for them too.
    Carolx

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    1. Oh Carol that's so sad for them :-(
      Some places have been hit hard again overnight.

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