So, Irene has come and gone. Thanks to all of you who emailed or left comments letting me know that you were thinking of us and our safety during the storm. Things were really fine for us here at the house during the storm yesterday. We didn't really lose power for any extended period of time, and other than a handful of tree branches that came down, damage outside of the house was minimal. However, it looks like it is the aftermath of the storm that will be the biggest problem here in Vermont.
It seems that we've lost our community garden plot to flooding. The garden itself is near a river, and the majority of rivers here in Vermont have crossed over their banks and spread into the streets and neighborhoods surrounding them. I suppose there is some chance that we might be able to salvage a few plants or a bit of produce, but considering the fact that Annie 2.0 reports actual small rapids running in the road that leads to the garden, I suspect the odds aren't that good. Despite my frustration, I'm trying to maintain perspective on the whole situation. Many local farms have been completely flooded, and nearby towns no longer have their Main Streets. I'll miss my edamame harvest, but at least I'm safe with my livelihood intact.
We were homebound during the storm yesterday, and both Mariam and I kept thinking of the beginning of A.A. Milne's story Piglet is Entirely Surrounded by Water from Winnie the Pooh. You know the one? It starts like this:
It rained and it rained and it rained. Piglet told himself that never in all his life, and he was goodness knows how old- three, was it, or four? - never had he seen so much rain.
The quoting of Winnie the Pooh stories is a frequent occasion at our house; Mariam has most of them memorized word for word and likes to put a British accent on here and there when reciting dialogue from the stories. Whenever she does her rendition of Rabbit or a great impression of Piglet, I'm reminded of how very, very much I like these stories. I feel like it is a great tragedy of American culture that they have become totally co-opted by the cartoon versions of themselves. The original Winnie the Pooh books are brilliantly written and are full of adventure and humor. If you've never read the original stories, I cannot emphasize enough how very much you are missing. You should get a copy yesterday.
To read a bit more about our favorite audio versions of these very beloved books, you can revisit this post that I wrote a good long time ago. It's all still true.