This is relatively minor damage compared with what they had expected. As it panned out, they were right on the very edge of having a lot more water in their home. Their next door neighbours (still in Tasmania on holidays) had water in their house to about knee height. And other friends of theirs in the same suburb also had water in their houses.
I am told the yard is a mess and the shed will need to be cleaned out, but we are all feeling very relieved that they escaped relatively lightly this time around. I have spent the morning buying gumboots (in short supply in Brisbane right now) and other cleaning supplies to take up over the weekend to help with cleaning jobs in their street. We are also trying to get hold of a high pressure cleaner to take with us from down here since I guess they will also be hard to come by at this time.
The above photo was taken at the end of our street yesterday (similar to the place where the photo I posted a few days ago was taken during the 1974 flooding). This is the park I walked past every day coming home from school.
While there is relief for our family this time, my sister is already feeling some "survivor guilt" that she didn't do more for our neighbours or other friends who've experienced more significant flooding. But when they were predicting a peak over 5 metres, all they could do was work with the information they had. Much worse outcomes were predicted this time yesterday.
I feel so grateful to God for His kindness to us. I woke up in the early hours of this morning and couldn't stop thinking about what was happening inside the house where I grew up. Being the middle of the night, the time when everything always seems to be at its worst, all I could imagine was my childhood treasures and memories floating around in a muddy pond. It made me cry.
So this morning when I heard on the radio that houses in a street very close to the one my parents live in had been spared this time I was hopeful. And I cried again when I heard there wasn't a muddy pond inside their house.
Psalm 30:4-5: "Sing praises to the Lord, O You His saints and give thanks to His Holy name. For his anger is but for a moment and his favour is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning." (ESV).
It is not over yet though. We need to continue praying for all those who have been affected by this terrible natural disaster and those who have lost life, loved ones, homes and possessions in it.