The rains have been torrential this Summer and early Fall. Storms lasted days, even without coastal hurricanes carrying heavy winds this far inland. The ground was soggy and remained puddled for days. The creeks were often full and galloping. One day, state roads in two out of three directions from Earthaven were closed due to landslides. (All roads to Earthaven have been repaired and are now open.) Still, ours is hardly the bioregion most slammed by climate change.
Saturday night (October 5) rained heavy and long, and the creeks couldn’t hold their contents. We lost the Forest Garden footbridge, more buffer area around the first bridge, and a ton of brush was washed downstream. Leaping waters dug huge crevices into the edge of the nearby road, rutting it up royally.
The next morning, circuitous footpaths to the Hut Hamlet were taken to avoid the lake that had settled between the Free Store and the playground.
There’s been nothing like it since the hurricane of ’96 that pushed the tree trunk bridge downstream, shoved two vehicles aside, and sent river rocks across the then bridgeless ford.
Emergency work parties, sand bag brigades, and other “call out the troops” events happened daily for a couple weeks. Huge kudos go to contributors of hours and efforts in the rain, with and without boots, and in pretty high spirits! We’re blessed that temperatures remained balmy.
The Earthdelver Orbo (physical infrastructure management group) assessed damages and options for the short and long term. Ideas for rebuilding or relocating the lost footbridge and other considerably more expensive options are coming forward—ideas we’ve had the privilege of keeping in the future up until this very wet season.
We’re now in the long holiday season that started with last week’s Halloween/Samhain events and the annual Ancestor Feast. Next comes our community Thanksgiving, featuring the bounty of our gardens and farms. And, in the lead up to Winter Solstice, Christmas and New Year’s, we’ll be getting ready for the Bizarre Bazaar on December 8th (y’all come!). To ensure that everyone can get in an out of the community safely, we are double timing road and bridge repair while sharing the juiciness of community efforts to rally and rebound, becoming stronger and more connected for our trouble.
it’s turned into the most beautiful autumn ever, exuberant display of these communities of trees turning vivid with the cold, and expressing their joy at having lived among these creatures once again. They return, like Persephone, to the underworld; that is, their Spirits return there.