We returned to the house midmorning on Sunday and my sister in law and a handful of neighbours had filled two trucks full of our belongings that were above water. We set in and continued packing, a woman whom I had never met arrived at my door to ask how she could help. Thinking she was with the others I asked her to help pack the kitchen. Over the next couple of hours, I found out she wasn't with the earlier group of neighbours, but had a friend down the street who she had come to help. When the friend had not arrived, she just looked for someone else to help, and that turned out to be us. This was to be the atmosphere for the next few days. Neighbours and community rallying to help each other out. There were beverages being handed out, food trays passed around. People covered in mud.
Once we emptied the top dry floors of the house we headed down, down to the muck filled basement. A kind neighbour had pumped out the water so there was only about 20 cm still there. I wandered with my steel toed rubber boots through the water, picking out things that could be salvaged. These were then rinsed and packed for further cleaning. The devastation on that level was intense, the smell horrible and the mud slippery.
The feeling of community coming together was overwhelming. Neighbours really rallied to help out. I found out I was living among an amazing group of people. These people spent every free moment helping others out. There were pumps going and things being moved out as quickly as possible. And that was even before the salvage began.
It was a day of small celebrations, lots of hard work, a feeling of community and a lot of laughter despite what we were going through.
I know that I will ever be able to truly thank all the people who helped, especially Jen, Tamara and Lynn. Who not only did they spend the entire Sunday with us cleaning, but continued through out the week with all the other tasks that go with recovering from a flood.