August 08, 2008


Yesterday's monsoon stirred up mucha drama in our corner of Hartford.

Our perennial small body of water, dubbed, the Lake of Shining Waters, was back. Basially, our block (between Newington Ave and Hollywood) slopes ever so slightly to the west, and I suspect, drains into our backyard. So whenever we get any sort of meaningful precipitation (a lot in a short time, or a long drenching rain), the backyard floods.

It only happens 2-3 times a year, at most, but often enough so that we have a remediation plan - involving rubber boots (both Zippy and I own them) as well as a sump pump, garden hoses, and an electrical cord on a GFCI, clipped to the clothesline. No humans or dogs have been electrocuted. So midway through yesterday's storms, I came home to get that set up. It's been running ever since, the lake has shrunk significantly (area) but it's still got a few inches in the middle of the yard. Suspect it will be gone by lunchtime.

Of course, for the few hours following the storm, our driveway did a pretty fair imitation of Niagra Falls, with a stream of water pouring out the backyard, through the small garden, and down the driveway. So the sump pump was merely window dressing until the water dropped enough not to flow directly down the driveway. And after the rain, I looked up the block - nobody had the same sort of run-off coming down their driveway - further evidence that we are the official neighborhood low spot.

In addition, our side yard (which has been newly cleaned out) flooded - resulting in water leaking somewhat insistently into the basement via two side windows. This has only happened once before (winter melt, with an ice dam) - but this caused minimal chaos - everything in the basement in the water path is elevated or in plastic tubs, the water ran right into the drain, and the dehumidifier worked to dry things out once again. Minimal problem.

Finally, the biggie - the roof seems to have sprung a leak, perhaps related to the combination of wind and rain. We've had smallish leaks before - although I think those may have been related to antiquated and clogged gutters (our ladder is not quite long enough to reach the 2nd floor gutters in the front, so they are cleaned out less often than the others). My bed got wet yesterday (rain coming in sideways through a window with a fan in it, plus a ceiling leak).

So, Zippy was, as expected in an incredible mood. I'm yoga / serenity princess when it comes to this stuff. I worked on fixing the things I could (the backyard lake, the basement flooding), accepted them as part of life. Got my bed out of the way of the dripping and set up a bucket. Zippy will call his mom to discuss the roof (truthfully, its probably overdue to be replaced). But I am not gonna let it wreck my life. Zippy, on the other hand, Eeyore'd his way to global warming, destroyed property values, conspiratorial neighbors, etc.

Sometimes you just need to pull on your rubber boots and go deal with what life throws at you, yanno?

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