So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other

Posted by: nickbuol

So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/24/16 05:10 PM

This morning and afternoon my daughter's high school was hosting the first Marching Band competition of the season in our region. My wife and I were volunteering to help out at the competition, and during the frequent down-time I jumped on to Facebook.

It was then that I saw Randy (SirQuack) post a photo of his son's band on our field. I had no idea that he would be there.

So there we were, just on opposite sides of the same football field. I responded to his post, and even tried to send a messenger note, but nothing... I know some people here would try to avoid me, but usually we are friendlier than that here in Iowa. grin

So we were so close for a handshake and quick chat, but alas, it never happened.

It is early in the Marching Band Competition season in Iowa, so maybe later in the season.

Now off to go help fill sand bags (expecting major flooding in our area in the next 24-48 hours (flood stage is 12 feet, projection is almost 25.5 feet of water). We are safe where we live, but a lot of people aren't. This is coming 8 years after the worst flood in history (for our area) where water hit just over 32 feet. Some areas never recovered from that one.

Then another marching band competition later tonight. Busy day.
Posted by: Gr8_White_North

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/24/16 07:08 PM

So close and yet so far, not even social media could bridge your football field. Maybe next time wink Good on ya for helping with sandbags, that's a tough job glad to see someone helping their fellow man for now personal gain. I will be watching the weather and our thoughts are with you.
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/24/16 10:19 PM

Yeah Nick, it has been many years since we first met and you stopped over to my house. It completely slipped my mind when we were going to be in your neck of the woods that you might be there. Sorry I missed your message as I was driving back home and you know what they say about texting and driving, lol.

Can't believe Jacob is a senior this year and in his 4th year of playing the quads. Off to ISU next year and he is thinking about trying out there as well. Would be a busy time when combined with Engineering. smile Funny, Nathan our youngest son got picked for percussion this year also, oh boy...
Posted by: Gr8_White_North

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/24/16 11:02 PM

HMM I thought it was Axiomoes.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 12:40 AM

Originally Posted By SirQuack
Yeah Nick, it has been many years since we first met and you stopped over to my house. It completely slipped my mind when we were going to be in your neck of the woods that you might be there. Sorry I missed your message as I was driving back home and you know what they say about texting and driving, lol.

Can't believe Jacob is a senior this year and in his 4th year of playing the quads. Off to ISU next year and he is thinking about trying out there as well. Would be a busy time when combined with Engineering. smile Funny, Nathan our youngest son got picked for percussion this year also, oh boy...


I still remember the time, years ago, when you posted something here about getting a drum set....

My youngest is a senior this year (she plays clarinet), but I was a drummer back in the day. Started out on snare, but moved to be the school's first, and only ever, quad player. Small town, and I happened to hit right at a massive and unusual peak in the band size. Literally more than 1 in 4 students were in the band. Anyway, good times.

If I see Norwalk in any of the upcoming competitions that we go to, I will seek you out.

FYI that in tonight's competition that we did across town, we won all of the 4A awards and got 1st place with just over 16 more points than the 2nd place 4A school. Crazy. When we come to the Des Moines area the competition will be a lot harder though.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 12:43 AM

Originally Posted By Socketman
HMM I thought it was Axiomoes.



Axiomoes, Axiomites, its all the same to me....
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 12:47 AM

Originally Posted By Socketman
So close and yet so far, not even social media could bridge your football field. Maybe next time wink Good on ya for helping with sandbags, that's a tough job glad to see someone helping their fellow man for now personal gain. I will be watching the weather and our thoughts are with you.



Wow, filling sandbags, moving them 20 feet to a staging area, and loading them into pickup trucks is a lot of work. We only had about 2.5 hours onsite today between events, but we got a lot of bags filled, moved, and loaded.

Tomorrow we are going to help a single mom and her family from our church clean out their basement. The water is scheduled to get above the flood stage tomorrow as well, so we will be cutting it close, but that is when they wanted the help.

The best part of all of this has been the people. Nobody complaining, everyone just chatting away to pass the time and keeping right at it. Then again, the volunteers are pretty much people, like ourselves, that are far enough away from the river to be impacted. If my house was being threatened by a coming flood, my spirits might not be so positive right now.
Posted by: Adrian

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 08:26 AM

God Bless You for helping out, Nick. That is heavy work sandbagging.
Posted by: fredk

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 06:15 PM

Originally Posted By Socketman
HMM I thought it was Axiomoes.

An Axiomite is an Axiomoe that hangs stuff from the ceiling?
Posted by: fredk

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 06:17 PM

Originally Posted By nickbuol
...

The best part of all of this has been the people...

The worst of things brings out the best in people. Good luck. Here's hoping the forecast is wrong and there is no flooding.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/25/16 11:51 PM

Waters are rising. It was another busy day today. We helped a family move out of their home today. They didn't bother putting sandbags or other protection around or in the house as they were emptying it and most likely abandoning it if water reaches it.

The humbling part is just seeing what type of living conditions people live in. The smell in the house was pretty bad. The bedroom carpets looked like under the beds was nasty black mold... Not saying it was, just that it was anything but clean.

Throughout the day we saw random people just driving up and down streets with pickup trucks full of sand bags, and just stopped whenever they saw someone and asking if they needed sandbags. If so, they would pull over, unload and stack them wherever it was needed. Others just came around with water and snacks. Just amazing. The city started their "recommended" evacuation and curfew for those that don't evacuate at 8pm. We saw a group of people claiming that they were sticking around until the cops kick them out.

All sandbag filling locations are closed, streets are empty, it is eerily quiet. Things kick back into high gear at 7am tomorrow before the big flooding kicks in. The river is already about 6 feet above flood stage, and just on the cusp of real damage coming soon.
Posted by: bridgman

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 08:38 AM

Best of luck, hope the flooding doesn't turn out as bad as forecast.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 09:35 AM

Currently the river is just over 19 feet. Normal flood stage is 12 feet. Will be seeing it go up a foot every few hours until sometime tomorrow morning when it hits 23 or so feet before going back down.
Posted by: brendo

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 06:36 PM

Hope it's not as torrential as some of the floods that have happened so far this season.
Sadly some people are totally screwed as most insurance doesn't cover acts of god.

Here's hoping it's able to recede some tonight.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 08:33 PM

There are some live cameras of Cedar Rapids, but it is hard to get a feel for the amount of water, plus they aren't pointed at anything actually interesting. They put up ones that point at probably the most secure and protected part of the city.

Usually the river is WAY below the bridges, but now was is right up to the desk of the bridges... A few more feet before the crest overnight.

http://khak.com/watch-the-cedar-rivers-rise-in-cedar-rapids-live-video/
Posted by: brendo

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 09:10 PM

Those vids don't really show the danger, aside from the current level. Almost a tranquil feeling of a ready and evacuated part of town, hopefully more true than just footage of an empty neighbourhood.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 10:04 PM

Right, nothing showing where the water has already gone past the barriers and into neighborhoods.....

I do have some photos from the past couple of days of prep. These first batch are not my photos.

Anyone notice what is missing from this gas station?


Part of the sand wall on the east side:


Some of the dirt levee addition that was going up on the west side of the river:


The inside of the Paramount Theatre that has all of the seating 100% underground, and in 2008 had 20 feet of water above that. $16million to renovate and it just opened up again about a year ago. It is very ornate, you just can't tell from this photo. All of the seats were removed, as was an old historical organ (that was part of that $16million repair). They are expecting water to get into here again:


Sandbags...


Another business and their sandbags:
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 10:15 PM

And some photos from where I was working:

This was the house that we emptied on Sunday afternoon. They emptied it top to bottom. Not sure if they plan on coming back. They didn't look like they were in the financial position to buy flood insurance, so if their house gets water, it is done. They refused sandbags...


Adding to the levee on the west side. Dirt was high in clay content and really solid, our job was to wait until it got to the right height (they actually had land surveyors out to make sure that it was "level") and then we unrolled really thick (5+ mil thick) plastic over the other side and then put sandbags on it to hold it in place.


The other side of the levee as of yesterday. This is hard to tell height, but it was pretty tall. This is about half under water today, and rising...


Any manhole cover or sewer access was covered like this and sandbagged to prevent backflow water from flooding....


This was a business that either wanted to keep water out from their door, or zombies inside. I (sadly) joke about this because if water gets up to where the door is, it is going to get up under the siding and into the building anyway... They didn't think about that I guess.


Hard to see, but this is how a lot of the better prepared places are trying to protect their businesses (and homes). They wrapped the bottom of the house with thick clear plastic, taped the top to the house, held the bottom with sandbags, and then stacked sandbags against the plastic...


Sadly, and I don't have a picture of it, I saw a business that did a great job of this, except they butted to pieces of plastic up at their double glass doors. No overlap, and minimal attempt to connect the two pieces of plastic. Water will easily get in that spot and right between the glass double doors....
Posted by: fredk

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/26/16 10:47 PM

Reading threads like this I never quite know what to say. Hope the flood is not as bad as the preparations indicate it could be.

Unfortunately, this is probably the new normal. There are lots of places that are going to have to think long and hard about permanent solutions.

Good luck Nick. Hope all goes well tonight.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/27/16 05:20 AM

Yeah, what Fred said!
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/27/16 09:29 AM

So far, the report this morning is "just minor street flooding," but I also know that the city is more focused on the east side where they put all of their main efforts into projecting with the large and expensive cubes filled with sand to make a wall(there is a political joke in there somewhere about building a wall and someone paying for it, but that horse has been beaten to death).

The west side is where the houses are, and were a number of historical business districts are, so who knows if the mayor's report this morning includes both sides of the river, or just the one that the city wants to protect more (expensive businesses vs. low occupancy, low income housing)... I'm a bit snarky about it all this morning, but working on the west side this weekend and hearing the frustrations of people that live there has taken hold in my thoughts.

I live well away from this area, but work somewhat close to the northern flooding areas. No issues getting to work, and traffic is pretty light as all of the Cedar Rapids schools are closed. I know that the ground my by home is fairly saturated with water as my neighbor behind me has his sump pump running about 25% (on 1 minute for every time that it is off 4 minutes) getting water before it gets into his basement. Lucky for me that I sit on higher ground, so water doesn't flow into my yard.

We were supposed to get rain Sunday and yesterday, but didn't which is helping all around.

The flood waters are expected to crest at just over 23 feet still by about noon today. Then it will start going down, but will be above flood stage for almost a week. So while the peak is coming soon, and then will start getting better, the structures put in place will still need to hold back massive amounts of additional water for a while.
Posted by: fredk

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 09/30/16 02:45 PM

How goes the battle Nick?
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 10/01/16 03:12 AM

Things are on the up and up around here. All of the hard work has paid off. Well, for most homes and businesses. So many stories of people coming together that it has been great. Like the one business (a "Pub and Grub" place) that was in the wrong place for receiving any real emergency flood protections, and had to rely on just sandbags and plastic, getting a few extra sump pumps from a local heating/cooling company, delivered by inflatable raft, so that they could pump out the water as fast as it was seeping through the sandbags.

Nobody asked them to do it, it was just something that was shown on the local news during a drone video, where the TV anchor was doing a voice-over to the recent video, and it showed the owners of the business frantically trying to keep water out. It was something like an hour later in which the sump pumps were gathered from the heating and cooling place, driven, with an inflatable raft in tow, as close as they could get, and then boated over to them. When every minute counts, they wasted no time.

Again, we were blessed with living a few miles away from any of the flooding, so we were safe. There is a lot of cleanup going on, and still a lot of forced evacuation zones still in effect for a few more days yet, but the waters are going down, and the worst is well behind us.

Thanks for asking.
Posted by: fredk

Re: So two Axiomites come together yet miss each other - 10/01/16 03:41 PM

Sounds like things worked out as well as they could.

People are really good at heart. That is so easy to lose sight of in the current political/news climate.