Thanks Matt for sharing that. It was uplifting to hear. Folks in the Houston area and in Texas as a whole should be proud. Tough times are always the measure of a person and a community and it seems folks there have passed the test.
Five years ago when Tropical Storm Irene hit Vermont the flooding and sheer number of washed out bridges and roads isolated many areas. The response was such that I too was very proud of where I live. Almost the entire State is mountainous which between the terrain and our being lightly populated means there often is only a single road to get from Point A to Point B making it easy for an area to get isolated. In my area there were volunteers using their ATV’s to come into town to pick up prescriptions or get other vital supplies (oxygen etc) to the elderly and the most vulnerable. People with construction type equipment in isolated communities went to work repairing roads in their areas without being paid or even getting permission. In one community the locals quickly cut a half mile path through the woods so that kids could get to where a school bus could pick them up. They even put bark mulch down so that the kids wouldn’t get muddy and organized guards along the way to make sure little kids didn’t go off the path and get lost. In another community locals quickly built a foot bridge over a small river where the bridge had been washed away and the homeowners adjacent to it allowed people to park on their lawn, walk across the foot bridge, and then get into a car parked on someone’s lawn on the other side. The alternative was a 50 mile loop on back roads to get to the other side, so people with two cars made the trip once to get a car on the other side. In my area locals cooked food and brought it to where National Guard troops doing bridge repair were being housed in a sports facility. The State itself was superb in how they approached getting temporary bridges up fast and fixing roads fast so as to make them usable. By that I mean filling in the void and making it gravel to allow vehicles to pass, then after roads had that basic fix they came back to pave the travel lanes, and then after those were done they came back to fix the shoulders, put in guardrails again etc. Basically 80% solutions were put in place fast.
I can’t imagine our ever getting rain measured in feet given the mountainous terrain amplifies the effect as all that water cascades into the valleys, most of which have little to no flood plain relative to the area being drained. The rainfall in Texas staggers the imagination for folks up here.