Sunday, June 22, 2008


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I've returned from a week at camp. In the midst of near-record flood levels, my family crossed the Mississippi River. On our trip home, we crossed the same bridge I crossed to come home in '93 - it was oddly similar.

Our first night there, we spent the evening sandbagging at a historic landmark called the Nauvoo House. On and off throughout the week, people from camp were helping out sandbagging, walking the levee, and making midnight calls for help when a boil in the levee appeared, and the seepage through the softened earth grew too much for the pumps to keep pace.

On the night the boil popped up, Jude had already gone to the levee to help out - the river hadn't yet crested, and there was much concern about the direction of the next few days. Around 11 pm, a call came out for sandbaggers - they needed them now. My cousin, who was at the same camp with her son came over to my cabin. Did I want to go? I had just put Elizabeth to bed (poor kid - long week), and I knew she was pretty much out for the night. We loaded the 2 kids into the car (her son was there, too) and headed on down. For the next hour, we made sandbags while our children slept peacefully in the car just 10 yards away.

So far, the levee has held, and as the river level has dropped, the care takers of the Nauvoo House have relaxed a little.

The wildlife around the river are taking it in stride - the frog and the turtle were both enjoying the sandbags.

All these photos were taken the at the end of camp, after all the work during the week - we were all too busy to take pictures while we were sandbagging.


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