I did a bit of Googling and found this article on flooding in the the Willow and Nancy Lake area. Yikes.
Flooding and mudslides brought on by heavy rain closed the main highway and rail line between Anchorage and Fairbanks.For those of you familiar with the highway system in Alaska, it's not like there's an abundance of highways between Anchorage and Fairbanks! This is it, folks!
There is so much suffering due to the recent flooding across the United States. So many people lost their homes, or had homes severely damaged, in the Susquehanna Valley. In Alaska, the melting of permafrost will be disasterous. Are these rains just a regular cycle, or evidence of global warming? Sense would indicate: who cares. Treat it as global warming. Prepare and repair for the worst-case scenario.
When I went to feed the Fast Food Ferals after the last flood, I was shocked to see how high the water had been over their little foot bridge. I'm not sure if you can tell from the photo, but the mud on the leaves of the shrubs and the dead grass seems to illustrate that the water was over the banks and into the parking lot of the restaurant next door.
Each local disaster brings a sizeable creep in our property taxes--they predict another hike this year. So while we are high and dry on our hillside, as a community we still pay for the misfortune of our neighbors. We are taking a serious look at our finances, since the mortagage we could afford when we purchased our place six years ago is now taking a larger bite out of our income.
It is interesting how affluence is reflected in the property you keep. As owners of 58 acres, we have a sizeable yard. Mark also would mow the area across the road where the barn and cat facility are, with wide expanses of gorgeous green lawn. It made the farm look much neater, and I believe it slowed traffic, too, since the effect is almost parklike, with both sides of the road mowed back.
We can no longer justify the gas to maintain this, so that lawn will be returning to field. We probably should have just knocked it down twice a year with the tractor anyway but...well...we had the money, so we mowed the lawn.
There you go. The root of waste. Have it. Spend it.
Can you eat a lawn? No.
We are taking a closer look at where we spend money (including the cats), and where we waste resources. I expect there will be changes in our lifestyle over the next year. Already this year we are eating and saving more food from Mark's garden. Mark hopes next year to raise and preserve quite a bit.