Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Heat Wave

First it rained for 40 days and 40 nights. I didn't keep track, but it sure felt like it.

Then came the floods. Fear of the unknown. Would my basement flood? Did I stock the fridge with enough water? Am I on the same power grid as the evacuated parts of Deer Run? Do I have candles and a lighter in a central location? Would I have to evacuate? (No. Yes. No. Yes. No.)

I have never in my life seen so many emergency alerts on TV. None of them were a test.

There was the horror and sadness. I've seen floods on TV before. I've seen the annual floods in New Brunswick. But I have never seen Calgary flood like this. The train tracks for my daily commute buckled and the tunnels filled with water.

I am one of the lucky ones. I can stay in my home with my cats. We are safe.

Water restrictions went into place. Quick showers. Trying to use disposable plates and cups and cutlery to avoid using the dishwasher.

The uncertainty of working from home. Am I doing okay?

And then days without rain. I watered the garden with rainwater from those 40 days and 40 nights. I'm almost out.

Today the temperature rose to 36 degrees Celsius. (97 degrees Fahrenheit). Felt higher, with the humidity. It's been a long time since I've had to deal with such hot and humid conditions. I used the timer on my phone to remind me to drink a full glass of water every hour.

The cats were limp. I found Hermione huddled up against the cold air vent in the living room while Chloe slept upstairs and looked miserable. Charlie was subdued.

None of them seemed to want to go into the basement, Charlie and Hermione wanted to stay in my vicinity.

The mayor asked people to reduce their power usage ASAP as rolling blackouts had to be initiated.

So I grabbed some catnip, some cat beds, and some blankets. I went down into the basement and rubbed catnip on the bedding. Charlie and Hermione came down first. I tried to catch Chloe but she wouldn't let me. She came down on her own.

I turned on one light and started organizing the basement a little better. When the cats were looking perkier, I turned off the light and brought out the laser pointer. We had fun playing Red Dot of Doom.

I didn't do any gardening until 9:30, when it was cool enough to be bearable. I sprayed myself with Off and got to work. I'm going to lose some of the sweet peas to the heat and lack of rain.

Now we're under alert for a severe thunderstorm. High water alerts have been issued for places north of Calgary.

There have been good moments. My sister came to Calgary this weekend to be my guest at a coworker's wedding. I got to practise some reiki on Mary-Anne and she loved it. We had a great time at the wedding and reception. It was the first time I'd seen my coworkers since the flooding started.

The next day, I took her to the labyrinth in Silver Springs. I walked behind her. I noticed at one point she paused to look at a dark butterfly.

Afterwards, she hugged me and told me that she thinks the butterfly was our father, that he was happy to see the two of us together. She said that black butterflies are meant to represent souls of the dead. I thought it was pretty.

Now I'm tired and sweaty and covered in dirt and Off. Time for a quick shower before bed.  I want my normal back.


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