Sunday, 16 January 2011

Yesterday........

....I was going to Ouyen. I was up nice and early as it's a trip of about 4.5 to 5 hours on a good day...! 
It wasn't!! 
A good day that is!
Started off really well, left home at around 6.30am, a beautiful sunrise amidst thick moist mist.....
So much moisture in the air has given us here in the hills wonderful ground mists in the morning for the last couple of days. There has to be something beautiful come from this dreadful week..?
I drove on roads edged with water, lapping onto the road in a few places, huge gum and oak trees down and pushed off the road by big machinery no doubt. Roads pitted with big potholes where the water has rushed over and taken the bituman with it..
Not too bad really, a pleasant drive in the welcome sunshine, the air getting warmer as I drove North West and over the Great Divide. I got to St Arnaud about 8.15am, looking for breakfast by this time. Found the public loos and thought it was a bit strange they had no lights..?? Couldn't find anywhere open in the town for coffee so decided to keep going to Donald which is only another 30 odd Kilometres away. Driving along listening to an excellent story, round a big sweeping bend and.....



(about 10Ks out of Donald, I think at Cope Cope)
Hmm, certainly can't take the little Mazda through that....
Turn around and drive back to St Arnaud and to the BP service station and into the line of cars waiting. The amount of locals filling containers with fuel and buying ice should have made me think, but no, I was having a lovely time looking forward to my weekend away on my own, no man, no dogs...Just me visiting an old friend, giving her a wonderful quilt and watching her get a lifetime membership from the Sunraysia Patchwork Friends, then having afternoon tea with all of them in the hospital....! These were the thoughts filling my head..!
When it was my turn at the bowser the fabulous guys actually pumping my petrol and washing my windscreen (I just love country town service) told me the power was out right across the whole area, had been since 11 the night before. They weren't sure that I would be able to get through to Donald, they were pretty sure that all roads were cut by flood waters....! OK!! Perhaps I can get through via Sealake...?? Err, no, Charlton is under water, that's where the substation is for the power!! I should have figured that one, it's a river town...DUH!! In the mean time my tummy is saying 'give me food', no breakfast yet..! A bottle of warm Pepsi (no power remember) and a Mars bar (energy) gave me power to try the Wycheproof road. Driving, driving, pretty  bl#*%@y big areas of water but still driveable, lots more trees down and strike two........





..here we are again..! While I was sat there talking to the Railway Man on the mobile and taking photo's a couple of SUVs (one pulling a boat, I was tempted to do a deal..!) edged very cautiously through the water, it was past their bumper bars, no way was I trying that! I might be desparate but I'm not stupid!! This water was flowing too, the flooded road at Cope Cope was still, but this was going at a fair rate...





..this was the flow under the road where I was parked..


Turn around again, back to St Arnaud. I think this was around 10.30am, I'd been driving around St Arnaud since 8.15, over two hours! Time to make some decisions! According to the locals at the Information centre the biggest worry, apart from lack of power, was that the rivers would flood higher as the water came down the systems..
I was worried that even if I got through, I might not be able to get home for days. I could stay an extra night but no more, I had to be back by Monday at the latest..! Decision made, I was going home, I wasn't happy but it turned out to be the right one in the end. Sue's daughter Meg was also driving back to Ouyen yesterday, she made it through by being a bit adventurous and using back roads (thanks to the gps on her iphone), as she was eventually driving through Donald the river was breaking it's banks and homes were being evacuated. Meg doesn't have to come back though, she's taking a year off to help her Mum and Dad through..


So that was Saturday, this was Friday...



so warm and wet that we couldn't see out of the windows..

not happy...

the paved courtyard outside the lounge room..

constantly being dried because we love the big puddles..





..and finally, what to do when it's pouring rain and you have no power...? Sandwich a certain quilt..
Thanks to all of you for your input on finishing this, I decided to call it finished and bind it in the black, loving it....

18 comments:

Quiet Quilter said...

So glad you made the right decision and got home okay. And you ended up with a sandwiched quilt ready for the next step. Good luck on your power coming back on soon, if it hasn't already..

Frances Leate said...

You certainly made the right decision as there is no fighting with nature. When we first moved to Cairns we suffered many such frustrations and our home (only 12 kms out of town) often saw us flooded in for days. Some of the roads have improved now but my attitude has also changed and I just stay home and quilt - there is always something I can do power or no power. Take care!

Fiona said...

Oh no ! But you are safe that's the main thing :)

Hugs - Fee X

Julie said...

Quite an adventure there Lizzie. Pretty much the same over this way. We can't drive south east or west without hitting flood water. Oh and there is a river to the north, so pretty much isolated for a few days.

Margaret said...

I'm so glad you turned back. Must have been so frustrating, but with all the flooding, you made the right decision. Stay safe!

Farmyard Crafts said...

Really glad that you're safe. No fun driving through flood waters. Better to be safe!

Anita said...

To bad you didn't get your "you time" but the important thing is you're safe.

Esther said...

Thank goodness you are Ok, things can happen and change so suddenly, so glad that you got home.

Sue said...

What an intrepid adventurer you are. I'm so glad you turned around and are safe and almost dry. A small water feature in the garden is fine but I hope it doesn't get any worse for you.
I did have a little smile at poor bedraggled poochie tho'.

Francien said...

Oh Lizzie...i was wondering how it was in your country...the most horrible daily news is coming here on TV from Queensland ...poor people and animals...how cruel is everything there...it must be terrible to lose everything...i can`t amagine...and what a story you are telling us...you certenly made the right decision..your safe now...hope it doen`t get any worse..lovely pictures of Molly!!
Take care and greetings.. Francien.

Rafael's Mum said...

So sorry you didn't make it through, but you are very right.. better safe than sorry! Glad you made it back ok. And just look at that little face... isn't she the cutest???? Aaaaww.... you'd scoop her up and cuddle her to death...

Sew Create It - Jane said...

Sounds like you've been through an adventure...but you are right...better safe than sorry! Keep warm and dry and safe!

Jen said...

Oh Lizzie, what a disaster love.
At the very least though you tried your best to get through. Far safer to turn around and accept defeat graciously!
Do you have plans to try again for a third time?
xxxx

Meg said...

And I made it back as well! By Monday afternoon the water, where the white car was stranded, had completely receded. But it was still pretty bad in a few places. Hope your third attempt is successful! The moving vans arrive lunchtime thursday, so have about 48hrs to finish packing!!!

Melody said...

Oh dear. So glad you are safe.

sewwhatnext said...

:0 I hope you don't have flooding too...

Micki said...

Sorry that you went through all that, but so glad that you got home safely,
Your dog is getting cuter and cuter every day.
Micki

Bree said...

that poor little dog all wet made me laugh out loud!
greetings from Queensland!

Bree

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