Thursday, June 12, 2008

If you're in Iowa City

If anyone reading this is in Iowa City right now, please go help sandbag if you can. We need all the help we can get. The floods are going to be even higher, and it's still raining. Right now they look to raise up 5 feet more. Our walls aren't high enough.

Thank you so much for all your help and concern.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Apocalypse Now?


Apparently, one of the secretaries in Family Medicine, where I work this summer, was trying to get a refund for a dictaphone she'd returned that was the wrong size. She called the company in California to try and speed up the process since the end of their fiscal year is coming up. However, the man at the company said it was pure chaos at the returns department right now. Curious as to why so many people were returning their machines, she asked what was wrong. He replied that people thought it was the end of the world, and wanted to return the machines.

Ummm, I just want to say something. So far in the last 3 weeks Iowa has had F5 tornados and what they call 500 year floods, flooding that has the probability of occurring once every 500 years. But have you seen us complaining about the apocalypse? Who's complaining about the end of the world?!

I got up this morning, canceled my credit and debit cards (can't find my wallet), put on some grubby clothes, and went down to the union where I filled sandbags for a few hours. They served us some lunch (Yummy! Thanks President Sally Mason! She was there bagging with us, too.) and then I changed and ran off to do an interview. To interview someone. I mentioned this to President Mason, and she told me to give her name as a recommendation. I told her that probably wouldn't work since I was interviewing another person. My hair was the worst to tackle before the interview. It was...interesting. Not pretty. But luckily, I was in a hotel for lunch, so I grabbed a comb from them and looked and smelled decent after I wiped myself down with baby wipes and a bit of scented lotion.

Anyhows, I interviewed, then went to grab Kris from work. We went back to his place, he changed, and then we went back to the sandbagging until 9 pm tonight, at which time I suddenly realized my arms wouldn't do anything anymore. At that point we decided to leave since I couldn't even lift my hands above the level of my waist.

Enough talk. Here's a few pictures. I was working today, and didn't take a single picture of the floods. However, here's a few places to peek. This is Iowa City.

I don't want to steal The gazette's photos, but I will point out that the guy on the far right in the 2nd photo is Steve, who does Maintenance work at the University. Really nice guy. Kris and I ate dinner with him, and had a great conversation. He's going to look for my picture on the wall once I graduate medical school.

These are aerials.

The Coralville dam and spillway has flowed over, which means it's coming into the city here now, and the US Army of Engineers can't control how much water is coming anymore.

This is Decorah.

If you don't know Decorah well, just know that this is a crazy, crazy amount of water coming down. I can't even express how much. If you look at the picture of the bridge alone, that's just in the middle of the water....that's how wide the river usually is.

The images below are from Parkersburg when my mom and I went to visit my great-uncle there (my maternal grandmother's brother). My mom grew up in Parkersburg, so she knows lots of people there. We were both horrified. Just in case you can't tell, all the trees are stripped of all their bark. All that rubble and boards...those used to be houses. We didn't walk through it much, so here's a bit of the line of destruction right next to houses that are falling down, next to houses that have flowers still with all their petals.

But on this half of town....there's nothing left.

My second cousin had just moved here the week before the tornado hit. He was renting a house and lived with his wife and baby. They didn't have renter's insurance yet. The house is gone. They've found almost nothing from the rubble. They've lost everything except their lives.

But that's enough. We'll pick it all up, get it all together.

Sorry I've been away, we just can't get away from picking up pieces and trying to keep everything together here. I'm still okay, so I'm trying to help everyone wherever I can. I'm safe.


Friday, June 6, 2008

back to the brown

Hey A,

It's been too long!! I've been out of state, on vacation, to celebrate Mark's graduation from high school, to swim at the beach, and revel in the palette that is Florida. I have never appreciated the beach as much as I did last week. To see colors that were not brown! To see never-ending water! Ohh, that was the life. James wants to move back to FL once I'm done with these higher education shenanigans. One thing is for sure. We are getting out of AZ as soon as possible. I don't even care that this is Indiana Jones territory. I don't wear a fedora, I don't have a horse, and I'm tired of the dust.

My only qualm with the vaca was being stung repeatedly by jelly-fish tentacles and being pushed head-first off of a balcony. Besides these minor incidents, I was happy as a clam.

Speaking of clams, you've got to be soaring with the fact that Kris is your new neighbor! I am concerned, however, that even in your free time you continue to be sleepy and tired. You must work on this. I suggest taking the summer off and sleeping through the whole thing. Well, perhaps not.

My Aunt-in-law warned me that pretty soon everyone I knew was going to start having babies. She may just be caught up in her own grandmother thing, because I'm not really sure I know of anyone who's close. Although I played a fun game in my head where I tried to guess which of our friends would be first. Your thoughts? Anyway, I figured it could be a good excuse to take you up on your suggestion of knitting a baby sweater. You know, start the stockpile in case there are any winter babies in the coming years. After playing with her two grandchildren for a week, I'm shocked that anyone has enough energy to become a parent.

Well, it's certainly Friday and although I just got back, I'm clearly not task-oriented since I'm spending my office time blogging instead of researching. You will have to remind me if your office job for the summer is similar to what you did last year or something new. I've decided that doing the research is not as interesting as coming up with the initial research plan. Perhaps that's how some people feel about knitting. I'd rather just put this project on hold and start a new one.

Say hi to Kris for me. Take care! Sleep in!

Miss you,

Monday, June 2, 2008

Tap tap tap...Is this thing on?


Hallo? I am sleepy and tired, and have had a bit of a crazy last few weeks. If you couldn't tell from the fact that I haven't posted anything. However, I am still here. Barely. Very tired, going to bed.


-Passed 1st year of medical school
-Kris graduated
-Saw parents
-Slept lots
-Went shopping, bought lots of clothes that fit my body since I've gained weight (from passing medical school and not moving)
-Visited Kris
-Kris went to New York, spent night almost in Bronx (better than in airport, still sketchy hotel)
-Amy went to work, realized once again that she could never do a desk job for more than a summer
-Visited home
-Grandpa turned 90
-Watched fireworks
-Visited Parkersburg, am still in shock
-Picked Kris up from airport
-Stopped for food at Culvers, and couldn't leave: car broken, won't start
-While car broken, moved Kris into new apartment for summer (in same city as me!)
-Tried car again, Yay! Turning on of car means I can drive it back to house
-Got Kris ready for first day of life after undergrad
-Kris, in sleepiness, accidentally locked door so that roommate couldn't get back in house later
-Went to appt (doctor's)
-Went to work, got bad migraine
-Wanted to leave work, but didn't, still got nothing done
-Gets call from roommate, locked out of house
-Gets picked up by brother-in-law, pick up Kris, go home and let roommate in house
-Makes brother-in-law check house for burglers or strange people in fit of paranoia
-Kris and BIL look at car
-BIL quickly diagnoses problem
-Buy fuel pump
-Kris and BIL install fuel pump, Amy brings beer and brownies for happiness
-Men rinse off since BIL was doused in gasoline while installing said pump
-Everyone goes out for Mexican
-Car works
-Amy collapses at home and types up summary before sleep

Sleepy and tired,