Monday, June 23, 2008

FEMA Fun 'n' Fotos

Another flood update for friends and family.

(WARNING>>>I'm fighting with the blog site today. It won't space things right, and the font is funny and there are big blank spots that won't go away. Try to ignore these. I tried but they keep reappearing even after I go through and change it all)

Today it was mostly going to various places to apply for assistance.

FEMA/SBA (small business administration) for a loan application. This is to help with reconstruction or whatnot. They said you do this along with your FEMA application so Sher did.

The SBA lady taking and checking Sher's application got to the part where Sher listed her social security income and looked up and said, "I'm sorry but how old are you?" Sher does not look old enough to be getting that. Another woman asked Sher the same thing.

Fred went fishing for a bit which was good. They need to take some breaks. You can't stare at your damaged house all day, your crap all over the yard, and face what needs to be done all the time. This also means helpers tomorrow get fresh fish so come on over!

Sher and I also went to the Red Cross and got some $$ to help with a new hot water heater. We'll need to talk to the city or someone later. She could have gotten an estimate and gone back and MAYBE gotten 25$ mroe than she got today...but seriously. Her time is worth more and the Red Cross center is closing tomorrow so it would be a big pain to try to get the money later.


Now for today's photos:

Here's the river looking all pretty and peaceful and back in its banks.
























You can see why everyone wants to live there.





Here is one of the great tragedies of the flood of '08...































The garden is a goner. I thought there was one tomato plant left but it was just a weed in a tomato cage (isn't there a song about that?) (there should be).




Sher by a sand pile for scale:




























Keep in mind that Sher is 5'2" tops. This sand is scooped up from the park. No. It is NOT from the sandbag levees. It was dumped by the flood on the park/streets/lawns/basements. There are dozens of these piles around town. The street sewers are full of sand. The rumor is that the city is taking this to use on the roads in winter.

Here is the park...NOT a street. That is the grassy area.






























It's just covered with sand and looks like a street. They have little front end loaders and guys with shovels trying to scoop up the sand and get the park back in shape.

Here's a depressing photo from somewhere around town.























All over people have piles of their homes' walls, floors, kitchens, baths and personal items piled by the street for pick up. Fred and Sher had a friend come with a truck and haul it all away as it was pulled from the house 10days ago or so. They didn't have to walk out each morning (out of their camper) to face a pile of their ruined stuff. I think this can't be good for the general mental health of the community. So far only one neighbor hauled off to the ...uh...psych ward. Sad. But he's back and his family and friends and neighbors carried on.



Tomorrow is the last day for the Red Cross meals. We found out they were coming from a group of Southern Baptist men. They have mobile kitchen trucks and just go from one emergency situation to another doing this. They are good. Tonight was spaghetti for supper. We added some salad (to keep things movin') and cake. Pam brought a bowl of strawberries! Quite nice.

Tomorrow we're expecting another dishwashing crew and some help with the kitchen as well as an evening meal delivery. The meals really help (as do all the people) because it is quite hard to cook anything without a decent stove or hot water. If they pull the kitchen counters out, it will be even tougher. But, it might also be good here in a week or two if Sher took a break to come cook at Pam's or Fred took one to barbecue each day. Breaks are good.

For those who care...my hair is still doing well without shampoo though it was a bit of a pain to wash it in the hotel shower with just the little plastic hotel cups. I need to brush it tonight.

Sher is out of the shower so I think it's time for some booze.

2 comments:

Fly Right said...

This is the best soap opera I've ever been addicted to! Take that, General Hospital!

Angela's A-musing said...

Hi Jill,

Ya know, when you started your blog, I bet you *never* thought your blog entries would take such a series of turns, huh? But in your way, I think you are showing us the role of possessions in people's lives and what we do when our lives are truly stripped down. It's one thing to "live simply" by one's own choice. Quite another to have a dramatically new lifestyle foisted upon you. I hope that your parents and friends will continue to rise to the challenges all this turmoil has caused. Angela