Before I write today's post I want to let everyone know Hanno and I, and our family, are all fine. I received an avalanche of emails overnight, so I want to put your minds at rest. We've seen many of the flood reports on TV and it must be terrible wondering about someone being involved in them. We've had so much rain here, it's something I've never experienced before, even in the tropics. We had rain on and off since the beginning of December but when this heavy and relentless rain started last Saturday morning, it just didn't stop. It was common to have nine or ten inches in a day and as the creek in our backyard drains much of the town of Maleny, and they were having even more rain than that, it started to worry us. Luckily, all our natural systems worked perfectly, the water drained out into the Pacific Ocean, and the only mishap we had was when one of the steps down to the creek gave way when Hanno walked down to check it and he fell. He's sore, but okay. Overnight the rain eased off and I just checked the radar and the cell that's been there since Saturday has finally broken up. Today everything will start drying out here. However, an hour away, in our State capital, Brisbane is expecting severe flooding as all that water flows down from the west towards the sea. Then the search for those missing can start and the clean up will begin. Families are still searching for loved ones and many thousands of pets and wild animals have been lost. Please keep those people and the emergency service workers in your thoughts and prayers.
Just before all this rain hit us, I think it might have been around Christmas, Hanno started looking into a leak we had in our kitchen skylight. When it rained, a small amount of water drizzled down into the plate of the light. He got up on the roof and checked it all out. Luckily he isolated the problem, fixed it and before the heavy rain started, he'd changed most of the screws on the room, replacing some that had rusted or were damaged. That chore saved us from a wet kitchen and possible damage to the space under our roof.
Like housekeeping, home maintenance is an ongoing story. Hanno has made himself a regular schedule of cleaning out roof guttering, cleaning the solar panels and the roof, checking fences, checking that water tank drains are clean and flowing properly, checking drains are flowing in the backyard, and the roof on the front and back verandahs are sound and not leaking. That is on top of his yard work, lawn mowing, chicken keeping and gardening. There may only be two of us here most of the time, but it's a full time job for both of us to run our home as we wish it to be. Of course, we've both slowed down quite a bit so while we do what we have to do, we take our time. It's our payoff, we can work at our own rate and if something is not finished in a day, well, there is always tomorrow.
There is a bit of a forest out the front and Hanno has been eager to remove a few of the weed trees out there. There is a camphor laurel that should be removed and a couple of paper barks that are weak and keep losing branches. But just after Christmas, one of the older tree dropped a huge branch with no warning. The next day, Hanno got out the old chain saw and removed the tree. When summer is over, my friend Beverly and her husband Michael will spend a day here helping Hanno thin out the trees. Beverly hates it when I tell her that Hanno is climbing trees again, so with her and Michael here, I'm sure we'll be able to clean up the front garden and make the area safe again.
Having a capable and willing partner to carry out all these tasks is a real blessing. Not only does it save us money, but we have the satisfaction of being self-reliant and knowing that we can look after most things ourselves. We know we can ask family, friends and neighbours to step in and help with the really big jobs, and maybe in the future that will happen more frequently, but in the meantime, we're happy to be pottering around here doing for ourselves.