I don't know how much Texas news is reported elsewhere; but, it's been raining a lot this year - a whole lot. Last month was the 2nd wettest June on record. The ground is so saturated that we've reached a point where the rain is causing more damage than good. Every bit of rain turns into runoff which is causing flash flooding. My heart goes out to those families who have lost a family member (19 on the last news report I listened to) or have been displaced from their homes due to flooding.
Fortunately, for Abelard's community, no homes or neighborhoods have been threatened with flooding from all of the rain. We do have a lake in our community (about 2 miles from Abelard's home); but, the land around the lake (up to the high water mark) is owned by the Army Corp of Engineers and has been leased out by our community for parks, bike trails, etc. Many of these parks are now flooded.
We've been having a drought for the previous two years; so, the level of the lake was getting dangerously low. They had closed all of the boat ramps because they were completely out of the water and on dry ground. They opened the boat ramps a couple of months ago. Now they're closed again because the lake is too high. We started out 2007 with the lake being about 12 feet below normal level; it is now 15 feet above normal level.
I drove down to the lake yesterday to take some pictures. If you click on the picture then you can see a larger version.
This picture (left) is one of the picnic areas by the lake. Those green rooftops poking out of the water are covered picnic tables with firepits. There are about a dozen such picnic tables here. The two that are poking out of the water are the furthest from the lake shoreline. The others are completely submerged.
This next picture (right) is one of the soccer fields.
This last picture (left) is one of the softball fields where you can see the water has encroached up to about home plate. Kind of a funny story about this picture. I was explaining to a friend about the water having partially submerged one of the baseball fields. He couldn't believe it and was asking where it was. When I described the location he realized I was talking about a softball field, not a baseball field. Evidently, we have softball fields and separate baseball fields (which are further from the lake and, therefore, not threatened). I had no idea that there was a difference. I thought I was doing good to know that they were both games where you threw a little ball and hit it with a stick. I guess the sports police come after you if you have the gall to play baseball on a softball field or vice versa.
And the funny thing: We are still under a burn ban due to drought conditions. Watering restrictions are still in place for lawns. (I haven't even needed to water my lawn yet this year).
For those of you living in areas in need of rain, a word of warning: Be careful what you pray for! :)
... and the forecast for today? More storms this afternoon expecting 1 to 3 inches of rain.