The Trickle Down Effect

A drop of water falls from the sky.

It lands on a branch, trickles down a leaf and onto the ground where it soaks in to nourish the tree’s roots. It is joined by its brothers and sisters and together they create a gentle rain that brings fruit to bear, washes away pollen and fills creeks and rivers and streams.

But it doesn’t stop. The gentle rain turns into a violent downpour which turns the creeks and rivers and streams into torrents of gushing water. Five inches. Eleven inches. Sixteen inches…the most rain ever for the month of May, and it’s only the second day of the month.

Soon the images start to appear. A flooded street here. A barely visible sign there. And then the neighborhoods. Picture after picture of rooftops surrounded by brackish brown water. Poor homes in downtrodden parts of town. New homes in stylish developments. The water doesn’t really care how nice your house is–if it wants to, it’s coming in and there’s nothing you can do about it but get out as fast as you can.

I know a woman who had to abandon her car and swim across a parking lot to safety.

I know a man who was evacuated as the waters crept closer to his house.

I know another who canoed down roads his car had traversed just days before.

And you know what? They’re the lucky ones.

Now that the rivers have crested and, for the most part, the rescues are complete, we start seeing the other trickle down effect–the financial one.

Gas and water are in short supply.

Opryland Hotel, which has more than 2,800 rooms and hosts a multitude of national conventions is closed indefinitely. The money those convention goers put  into the Nashville economy has to be hundreds of millions in a year. Many of the bars and restaurants that depend on those tourist dollars are flooded themselves–a double dose of bad luck.

That’s the obvious story–the one that’s on the news. But there are hundreds of smaller ones. My cleaning lady called today. Three of her regular houses were flooded. That’s three less jobs for someone who depends on every penny.

That’s the real trickle down effect.


Filed under At Home

14 responses to “The Trickle Down Effect

  1. heartbreaking… the waters will ripple far and wide, for a very long time.

  2. I’ve been keeping my eye on the story and thinking about you. Hope you’re well and that your home sweet home recovers quickly.

  3. kleverkira

    This has been horrible. Our best friends are 9 months pregnant and had 4-6 inches in their house, warping floorboards and ruining carpet. My history professor’s house flooded…and then burned. Absolutely atrocious.

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  5. Thinking of you and yours. x

  6. Mother

    I just came home with a trunk full of mud-covered
    dishes, pans, etc from the flooded home of a good friend’s daughter – water within 12 inches of her ceiling. She is one of the lucky ones – she has flood insurance but she lost nearly everything. Her mother brought an SUV full of the above for her friends to wash. Some of her neighbors are just going to walk away from their homes because they cant afford to rebuild – they will be foreclosed on- and this is an upscale neighborhood!

  7. Daisy–A couple of years, I bet.
    UB–Thank you so much. We’re fine at my house. My brother, however, has been trapped since Saturday with 8 neighbors who lost everything. His house is fine though. He’s been fishing in the water covering his road and caught a huge large mouth bass this morning.
    Kira–I saw on the news about a woman who had her baby at home. A OB/Gyn heard about it and literally waded to her house to deliver the baby.
    Mother–That’s very nice of you, but remember not to use too much water!

  8. Unbelievable! Praying for you all.

  9. Glad to hear that you’re OK. I didn’t hear much of this at all until this morning. Our US news is all oil spill and illegal immigration. Wishing you and your family the best.

  10. older Sister

    We have re-claimed water – it can be used to at least hose the mud off. Sanitizing can be done later. Please contact me should you need this. My old neighborhood, Cottonwood has never flooded – estimated 75 homes just ruined and one burned. They are probably the lucky ones since insurance will cover that. So sad.

  11. Such awful news. The photos have been heartbreaking. I’m sorry for your neighbors but grateful you’re OK.

  12. Neice Whit

    Rockstar!!!! Do I see a Real Housewives of bloggers in your near future? 🙂

  13. You’ve been in my thoughts as well. Keep us updated . . .

  14. I didn’t hear anything about this. I’m so bad about keeping up with US news. I hope your brother is okay.

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