Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Not Washed Away

As Smacky mentioned, we've had a little rain here in Northern Virginia, but Sunday night was when the excrement hit the air impeller. It had been raining pretty much all day and I didn't think too much of going over to a friend's house to hang out. When I tried to go home that night (it was around 10 or 10:30pm), the available routes to my house were closed. Police were detouring traffic but there were a few places where the detours didn't apply -- my road being one of them.

I had to convince not one but two police checkpoints that I lived within the cordoned-off area. The second officer expressly told me not to venture beyond my road unless I wanted to lose my car and be lifted out by helicopter. "Not a problem," I told the good officer and went on my way. Although parts of my road are low, it wasn't terrible. Sure, there was some debris littering the roadway and about an inch of water ran across the paved part of the road, but again, it wasn't terrible.

The terrible part (relatively speaking) came when I got to the driveway. The driveway is gravel and was in the process of being washed away by a nice-sized torrent of water. Thankfully, there was a secondary driveway available built on higher ground that's normally used for nursery traffic (there's a nursery behind my house). So I was able to use that driveway and drive through the nursery to get home.

Yesterday morning was when we began assessing damage (of course, it was still raining though not as hard). Thankfully there was no damage to the house. The little wooden bridge that spanned the creek next to the pond floated away to the far side of the pond embankment. Part of the bonfire pit was washed away. But the worst was the driveway. So much of it had been eroded that there's now a big gap that can only be traversed if you're willing to submit your car to a two-foot drop.

Since there's no shortage of gravel where we are, the driveway can be repaired with an afternoon's worth of work. We were really lucky. Some folks in the area lost their homes or were trapped in their flooded homes (like in the picture above) and there's been reports of sinkholes closing roads and threatening property (as shown in the picture to the right).


Chris said...

Bummer about the rain.

Glad the driveway is the worst of it for you.

Wes said...

Eek! For a second I thought that photo was your home... I was going to ask if sarcasm explained why your two-foot drop was off by some undisclosed factor! But at least the rain is over now, eh?

It was pretty heavy out here as well, but I don't think our area saw any significant damage.

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