Friday, June 13, 2008

A Little Water Over the Bridge

Everything around me right now seems normal. It's just another day here at work, in my cubicle. But I know that down the hill, water is steadily creeping up the street by the Memorial Union. Rumors are flying. We're expecting that we're going to have to shut down all equipment here in MacLean Hall. We may be able to bring core services up at another site, but we might not.

Oh, and my wife and son and I are flying to the Philippines tomorrow.

Di and Ed and I tried traveling to the Philippines in March, but we had to abandon our trip when a delayed flight destroyed our tight schedule. We've been planning this second attempt since we came home. We padded our schedule, gave ourselves more time, more flexibility in case we had to rebook. Everything looked good. Now, though, we're wondering whether we'll get to the airport. Bridges are being closed, power is going out, drinking water is a concern.

I am caught between wanting to help, wanting to do something to keep services running, on the one hand, and wanting to get ready for the trip, on the other. We haven't seen Fran, our daughter, in more than a year. Our friends and neighbors and co-workers are laboring to hold back the flood, to keep power and water available.

Our own home is safe, far from the river. Even so, if and when we do make it to the airport and fly away tomorrow, my heart will be in three places at once--here, in the middle of the flood; on the plane, with my wife and son; and on an island on the other side of the world, where my daughter lives.

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