June the 3rd is a day shall not forget in a hurry. It was the day when the neighbourhood I live in was devastated by a flood.
It all began at 2 p.m. that day. I was outside my house playing with some friends when the dark clouds that had been gathering- all morning gave way to thunderous roars of rain.
We ran back into our houses and waited for the rain to stop. We thought it was just a thunderstorm that would stop in an hour or so. ‘it was a thunderstorm all right but we never guessed it would continue way beyond one hour. In fact, it rained and rained with undiminished intensity all that afternoon. By dusk, we knew that if the rain did not stop we were going to face the possibility of a flood.
Just after dusk, our fears became reality. The swollen river 100 metres from my house overflowed its banks and the water swept quickly through the neighbourhood. Within ten minutes the water was already knee-high.
Frantically we worked to put our precious belongings onto a higher safer place. However, ten minutes was not exactly enough time to do anything effective.
Soon it became obvious that we had to leave the houses. The police arrived urging everyone to evacuate to higher ground. Reluctantly but quickly my parents, brothers, sisters and I waded out of our house empty-handed into some lorries provided by the police. My neighbours did the same.
As the lorries made .their way to a flood-relief centre, glanced back at my house to see that the floodwaters had already risen up to the windows.
We spent the night at the flood-relief centre. There were about a hundred of us gloomy-faced and teary-eyed about what had happened. Fortunately, no lives were lost.
Late that night the rain stopped. When morning came we were able to return to our houses. What awaited us was far worse than the dreadful night at the flood-relief centre.
What was once cosy homes were covered with slimy mud. A good half metre of wet slush was on the floor. The walls, cupboards, beds, furniture everything was covered with mud!
The flood has wrecked the gate and some windows. Piles of rubbish were stuck to the fence. My father’s once shiny red car was now a dirty muddy mess. My bicycle was half-buried in mud. It was mud, mud everywhere! It drove everybody crazy cleaning up the huge mess the flood had left behind.
We spent a good week cleaning up our house. Our neighbours were all busy too bringing their houses back to reasonable condition. Things are back to normal now; well almost normal anyway. Every time it rains, we are reminded of the flood. We pray silently that it will not happen again.