Thursday, January 13, 2011

Crappy New Year

Since my last post, the chaos of the Brisbane floods has meant I've been unable to blog. (And yes, everyone, we are okay; thanks so much for checking up on me!).

And so it has taken me some time to confirm the sad news that Lori's husband Tony has passed away.

I can barely begin to understand what that must feel like and how much strength Lori will need to get through the next few hours, days, weeks, months ...

She will still need money, to help pay for bills and necessities while she works out how to go on from here. But most of all she needs our prayers and/or positive thoughts. Money may be short, but we can all share time to light a candle for Tony and think of Lori as she starts another chapter in her life. And I know comments and support people have given to Lori have helped give her strength when she has needed it most.

Seriously, life is so unfair sometimes.

Here, so many of us kicked 2010 out the door, hoping 2011 would be kinder. It's not been a hopeful start.

Speaking of which, when I get a chance I'll be posting about the devastation which has hit Queensland. I've emerged from it safely, despite some inconvenience, isolation and lack of power; but I'm mostly dry and I'm safe at home. I cannot get to my kids for reassuring cuddles, but they are safe and dry with their Dad; not stuck on a roof somewhere, or being evacuated to an emergency centre. We are among the lucky ones.

My heart bleeds for those who have lost or who are losing everything. As our premier Anna Bligh put it:  Mother Nature unleashed something terrible in Queensland. (And can I mention my admiration for our Premier who has shown herself to be a strong, effective and very human leader during this tragic event).

I've never actually been at the scene of a natural disaster of this scale. The closest I've ever come was arriving in Samoa, a few weeks after the tsunami hit. That was sobering, but it was after the event, and so much of the islands were not damaged and were as beautiful as ever. And the Samoan people were very upbeat about the tragedy and about moving on as quickly as possible.

At home, the fear and devastation of our own natural disaster, has been unbelievable. But so too, has been the courage and mateship.

We may be down, but we'll give it a good Aussie go at getting back on our feet, and into our homes.

Meanwhile, thanks to all for your messages of support and concern.

There are loads of chilling photos available online, so I won't offer mine here.

However, I will include a few from our trip home to Brisbane from the South Burnett, where we had gone to visit family.

Roads were cut for several days, but after a break in the weather and a chat to the local police, we decided to try the most likely route home. We were among the last cars to make it through before the highway was once again closed by raging waters. (And remember, I have a small and low Mitsubishi Lancer, not a 4WD! I took it slowly, and stopped at every town to check that the next path through was safe and clear.)

It's not an experience I would like to repeat any time soon. At this stage, all roads into and out of the area where my family live are still cut. But again, we are all safe. And as anyone who has lost anyone this year for whatever reason: That is the main thing.

 A rainbow after a storm at my sister and brother in law's farm the night before we left for Brisbane.

Miss 7 was desperate to find out what was at the bottom of the rainbow ... I felt it was a ray of hope that things will get better.

This torrent is usually a trickle, often dried up completely, but covered the road for several days.

Along the way ... the waters had receded just enough for us to drive through. (Mr 9 took this photo from the window).

And here. (Miss 7 took the photo).

 I think someone was looking after us that day...

Readers, how are you surviving, and how can we help?


Ms_MotorbikeNut said...

Glad that you all made it home alright.

(((( Hugs )))) XXXX Kisses XXXX

Anonymous said...

My husband was due to travel through the areas first concerned by floods. I am just so glad he was still on holidays. He's off work now too, but that's all we feel (so far) from this total disaster. Like you, I feel lucky, and am shocked and want to help as soon as I can. I am glad and everyone you know are safe too. x

Unknown said...

2011 can surely only get better, each time I turn on the TV or PC its such a saddening sight...

Veggie Mama said...

hasn't it just been a terrible start to the new year? Here's hoping it gets better x

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

I'm really glad to hear that you and the kids are alright Bronnie!

Wanderlust said...

I'm so glad you made it home okay. And 2011 can only get better, surely. I'm putting up the FYBF linky again for Lori today if you want to link up this post. x

Being Me said...

What beautiful images of the rainbow. I am so glad for you that you are ok. My heart is with all those who have lost in these floods, and of course with Lori today xxx

Unknown said...

Thank you, it works!