Monday, June 16, 2008

This is so typical

The command center of the southern Louisa/northern Des Moines County flood efforts has been at the Apostolic Christian Church about 3 miles south of Oakville. I say "has been" because I'm not sure if they'll be there tomorrow- the waters are rising steadily.

But let me tell you, the Apostolic women are a force to be reckoned with. They're used to preparing food for large groups of people, and I swear, they could teach courses on organization.

Well, they are of mostly German descent. And we all know the Krauts (of whom I am one), can organize. Okay, sorry. Bad joke.

They have a book than contains the land line and cell phone numbers, the email and home addresses of every church member, cross-referenced with what each person is willing and able to do.

They have a phone bank of sorts set up in the church dining room/kitchen. At any given time, there are at least 5 women, very conservatively dressed, hair pulled up in buns, on their cell phones, making sure that everyone has enough food/water/medical supplies out on the levees.

And these women can flat out COOK. The maid-rites I had yesterday? Divine. God smiled upon their makers.

Absolutely broke my heart today. The local Catholics provided the lunch for the 400+ rescue workers today. As we delivered it to the AC church, I made a random comment to one of the women, "Beautiful day we're having, huh?"

She replied, "Oh yes. God has blessed us."

She and her husband lost their house in the flood.

Utterly selfless.

So, that being said, this doesn't surprise me in the least.

This southeastern Iowa town was under water on Monday, but its people didn't give up their flood fight. Dozens of people filled sandbags in the parking lot of Oakville Apostolic Christian Church, with the aid headed south to towns that still face a flooding threat. A long line of trucks dumped sand for the workers, many of them women.

Bethany Frank, 28, said that the water at her farmhouse was up to the roof. "My house is past help, so we're trying to save everybody else's," she said.

"We're helping relatives and family," said Mary Lanz, 42. "We're all related." Oakville didn't flood in 1993, but a levee break north of town turned it into a four-mile wide lake this time.

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