I made it onto Riverview Circle a little bit before sunrise. The police roadblocks were gone. The sandbag stations were abandoned. There were no giant piles of sand, signifying that everything the city brought, the residents used. And still, it wasn’t enough.
The National Guard humvees have been replaced by troop trucks, indicative that there are still more people that need to get out.
At the Morse’s house, son “Hoss” was trying to warm up. Hie was in bare feet with his pants rolled up, his waders were wet from trying to help a neighbor whose basement was being overtaken by the Red River, which had found its way in through a drain. The sump pumps burned out trying to save it.
Everyone out at the Morse house was gone. I told him I was sorry for what his family was going through, he smiled — as everyone has this week — and said “what are you going to do.”
This neighborhood, and this city, which is getting far too little recognition as the media makes its mad dash to Fargo, did in five days, what it took three weeks to do in 1997, and they’ve done it better, and they’ve made the dikes higher.
I think a lot of people though that if it all went south, it would do so with water flowing over the top of a dike, and people still trying to stop it. But it didn’t end that way.
The street outside John Brummer’s house has about a half foot of water on it, again from the drains. Hoss says John evacuated last night, but I have not been able to confirm that.
Over at Bruce and Vikki Peterson’s house, a light burned in a front room, and I think I saw Vikki at a computer, but I couldn’t tell for sure, I stepped in water outside their house and water poured into the last pair of dry boots I had. Compared to Riverview Circle, I’ve got it good.
Update 7:38 a.m. – Now that the sun is (almost) up, I stopped by John Brummer’s house.
Water is streaming down the driveway. Nobody is home. Only the sound of birds punctuates the neighborhood. A pallet of sandbags still sits in the driveway. They never made it to the wall.