Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Too much water?

I'm a "flat-lander" girl. I was born on the High Plains and I still live on the High Plains. Water holds a great deal of fascination for me. After all, water is found here primarily underground. It has to be pumped to the surface in order to be used.

I expect rivers to be dry most of the year. And when I drive across creeks and rivers, it's natural to look down to see if the water is running. Water in a river is a novelty to me, a seasonal, short-lived event. It rains, and if it rains an inch or more, then the creeks and rivers will run for a few hours or maybe a day or two, then they dry out again.

That's how my world works. That's what's familiar to me.

So all this snow and rain and...water, is really messing with my sense of reality.

While driving last weekend to Great Bend, we crossed several creeks and rivers. Every single one was running. Every single one had wider than normal channels and was moving merrily on its way. Every river, every creek that I looked at had water in it. Lots of water. Not puddles, not tiny little streams, but lots and lots of water. My folks reported that at home, Sand Creek was running and Crooked Creek was running. And while the Arkansas isn't running (due to those water stealing Colorado people), the Cimarron River was running high and wide.

This is not normal.

This weekend, we got three inches of rain, and it rained again last night. We had only 1/2 an inch last night, but 6 miles north of us reported 3 1/2 inches. Kev called me on his way to Atwood and said it was wet and fields looked like wide rivers and lakes.

This is not normal.

The radio today has been issuing lots of flood warnings for the surrounding counties. And, it's rained on and off all morning and the forecast says it will rain on and off all day and will continue for the next couple of days.

Again, this is not normal.

Trenton Lake is the closest lake to us. And it's rumored to be flooding. I can't imagine it. It's been so dry for so long that I just can't comprehend that it's now flooding.

No flood warnings for Thomas County, my county, but then again, I don't think we have any real creeks or streams that go through this county. I wonder what it would be like to live somewhere where flooding is an issue? It's so far outside my realm of reality that I just can't get my head around the idea of flooding.

I know how to live with tornadoes. I know how to live with drought. I know how to deal with rivers that only run a few days a year. But I don't know how to live with too much water. It's just not...normal.

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