Sometimes I looked across the way and saw our neighbor, Mrs. Samalski, the Police Chief’s wife, through her window tending to her houseplants. I wondered why her plants weren’t asleep. Sometimes she saw me, smiled and waved at me.
Muddy water eddied in front of our doorstep, crept over the sill, and filled the basement overnight. I gazed out the window at the kaleidoscope patterns of the water as it rose around the house.
I was entranced by the sights and sounds outside as we waited for the boat rescuers. It wasn’t the roar of the water that piqued my curiosity; it was the human-like moaning of the trees as they fought to keep their roots in the thick clay soil, and the muck-sucking sounds when the flood tried to tear them out by the roots. Those tall proud Guardians won the battle as the waters swiftly receded.
After all, my big brother had been out there every day since the flooding began, filling sand bags and shoveling mud with Daddy. It was a disappointment for me, once I got outside. All the beautiful mud patterns were gone and I struggled as the sludge grabbed my galoshes. Needless to say, I landed face down in the stinky stuff.