Monday, March 19, 2012

The Flood

On Friday, December 22, 1989, (at least I think I have the year right) we were headed to Utah for Christmas.  The weather was the usual cold but it was December after all.  Well the night we left it got really, really cold freezing in fact.  In our absence we had a pipe burst in the wall of the upstairs bathroom.  The water from the burst pipe shot through the wall and across the room and through a towel on the opposite wall, shredding a perfect hole through the towel in the process.  The force was so strong that it cut through the bathroom wall and into the adjoining bedroom, soaking a mattress and then left the bedroom and headed down the stairs.  Once downstairs it took a right turn and headed into the kitchen. After a very brief stay in the kitchen the river of water pushed its way into the garage and finally down the driveway and into the gutter for parts unknown.  All this was taking place unbeknownst to us.  In fact we rather imagine it was probably flowing for a good 10-12 hours before it was stopped. 

Luckily a friend of the boys came by our house on Saturday and noticed the water running out of our garage and down the driveway.  After he realized we weren't home, he went home and told his mother that there was water running out of garage and down the driveway.  (That was a tender mercy)  His mother was a less active member of the church so she called the missionaries, who called the bishop.  He came to our house and turned off the water but couldn't get into the house.  At this point my memory is a bit foggy as to the sequence of events.  I do remember he had to call a lock smith to get into our house.  But I don’t think that happened until Tuesday.  Monday was Christmas.  We didn’t find out about the “flood” until Sunday night because the bishop didn’t exactly know how to find us.  This was in the day before cell phones; unlike today where everyone knows where we are at any given moment.  We stayed in Utah until after Christmas but headed home Tuesday, not knowing what to expect.  At that point we still didn’t know the extent of the damage.  We just thought it was probably a broken pipe in the garage.  We never dreamt the house had actually flooded.  When we finally made it home on Wednesday, it was a surreal sight.  The ceiling sagged from the weight of all the water from upstairs.  All our clothing had been removed by ward members and washed before mildew could set in.  Our furniture had all been put up on block so not to cause further water damage.  In reality the only thing we lost was the mattress and the bunk bed the mattress was on, oh and the towel!  Fortunately, we were renters so we just removed our belongings and walked away.  The house or the doll house as the kids referred to it had to be completely gutted.  So it was a perfect time to find a larger place to live.  And so we did!


Ashley Allred said...

Justin has told me this story before. Such a crazy story! Glad you were able to just pick up and leave.

Mike and Julie said...

A true story of service!! Sounds like great neighbors and friends :-)