As our trip to Switzerland was winding down, the rain was intensifying. I remember lying in the tent our last night and listening to it beat down with ever-increasing strength. It was so loud! Just when I thought it was raining really hard, it would start raining even harder.
By morning the ground had become completely saturated and was running down the little street in rivulets. Once out of the tent, all the children became completely soaked. As if the rain weren't enough, suddenly water started pouring out of the ground in our old backyard/garden.
Remember when we first moved in and I blogged a picture of the back garden? And then I mused about the drain in that picture? Well, now we know what the drain was for...
It's too bad it didn't work!
On our last morning visiting, with the rain still coming down and the cow field squishy beneath my boots, suddenly the manhole started pouring out water at an amazing rate. One minute I was standing at the gate to my old garden talking with the postman, and the next minute water was gushing everywhere.
It ran down the small incline and flooded our old back porch and the entire ground floor of the house. The water piled up and everyone had to think very quickly what to do. Boards were pulled from the porch walls, buckets and brooms were used to move the water into the street, and finally a dam was built to divert water from the house.
It was incredible how quickly everything happened, and heart-warming how everyone quickly came together to help in a crisis.
By lunchtime the rain had subsided a bit and the flood had been successfully diverted. We managed to dry all of our children off and pack up our very wet and muddy tent. After a hearty lunch, all our neighbors and friends gathered together in the street to wish us farewell. The sight of them standing all together waving madly as we drove off really touched my heart. It wasn't the tearful goodbye we had shared a year earlier, but a joyful one. I was reminded of the words from a circle song we used to sing with a Waldorf group in Texas before Kitty Bill was born and when the girls were still very small:
Merry meet, and merry part. And merry meet again.
Unfortunately, as we made our way down the road we saw that our little farm wasn't the only place that had succumbed to flooding. The fields and allotment gardens were a terrible sight!
Although it doesn't even begin to compare to the devastating floods seen in other countries this year, my heart broke for the families who work these allotments. It's confounding to think of the damage that just a few days of hard rain can do. And to think that we camped in that rain... and somehow we didn't float away. It's just crazy!