As many of you may now be hearing, Fargo and surrounding areas are preparing for the flood of the century. It is expected to be worse than the historic 1997 flooding when the river crested at 39 ft. Officials expect this time around the river to crest at (as of today) 41 feet on Friday.
The community is outstanding--volunteers have been working around the clock to fill sandbags and build sandbag dikes since Sunday. Steve and I are exhausted. We trade shifts (Steve goes, I watch the kids--I go, he watches the kids). I'm dreaming sandbags and waking up in the middle of the night to make sure we don't have flooding in our basement. So far, so good.
Yesterday the city was confident that 95% of the city has been diked and bagged. This morning though, we woke up to snow--lots of snow. The forecast predicted 1-3 inches, now they're saying 4-8 inches. The city now wants us to build our dikes up to 43 ft. We had a day off, but now we're asked to work around the clock again to fill and bag.
The city is VERY organized. National Guard is here, Red Cross, etc, and the city buses are shuttling people to the Fargodome and the city solid waste facility known as "Sandbag Central." They have machines at "Sandbag Central," volunteers have to fill by shovel at the Fargodome. Everyone here is calm, but very serious and determined. Everyone is focused to get the job done.
The universities in the area are shut down, and are asking students to volunteer. High school students are also getting out of school to volunteer. It's a massive community effort.
Yesterday we helped dike Steve's boss' house. Whitney watched us outside while Joshua was in school. Today, I've packed up all our pictures in 2 boxes, got our documents in the emergency backpack, and the med kit ready to throw in the car if we need to. So far we should be fine, but if we get ice jams in the river like Bismarck, or if one of the dikes fails (like it did in southwest Fargo) then we need to be ready.
The city has asked us not to go around, "site-seeing" and taking pictures. If you want to see pictures, check any news site. It is really amazing to see. People lined up around houses. Clay dikes in the middle of streets. Sandbag dikes that look like snow drifts.
Please keep Fargo and its surrounding communities in your thoughts and prayers. This is a really wonderful community, and everyone has worked so hard to protect it.
I'll keep you posted