(From a couple weeks ago...)
I’ve been having a bit of a rough time with the crazy that is my mind. Dreaming of cabins far away from the entire world, places where no children will look at me or talk to me. Trying to snap out of it, going to bed early, asking for help. I’m doing all the things, but all the things don’t always add up to equal normalness. Sometimes all the things add up to equal more crazy. But anyway, yesterday I had a day so chaotic that it sort of did snap me out of it. Maybe when all the rhythms and plans fall apart in a dose of Asian chaotic life, I can’t keep track of my insanity either and it slips away from me. Or maybe I’m finally on day 3 of my period.
The day started in the night, with a storm that took our breath away. Every person I talked to said they couldn’t sleep because of the heavy rains that seemed to get louder and stronger, louder and stronger, until it felt like the roof would fall onto us. (My Thai teacher said that her bedroom flooded and they were up cleaning out their drains in the middle of the night. In a storm.) Or thunder that sort of felt like an earthquake. It went on and on and I lay there and thought about the river that had already torn our bridge away.
So first thing, I went down to the river to look at effects of several tons of water landing on our town overnight. It was overflowing its banks. There were people everywhere looking at it, and it was proud and spectacular and brown in the morning light. It was rushing like a thousand stampeding water buffalos. It was glorious, encroaching on our territory, threatening to flood. But the rain had stopped and the sun was out and we were in the clear. We are in the clear, for now anyway.
Then I got a call from Neil, who told me that the contractor, who was supposed to come and help us on the next Monday was already at the garden, except that he was a different man. And Neil needed me to come and wrangle with a bit of Thai language. “How do I get there?” I asked. With the bridge gone, and the back roads a field of mud pits, we haven’t been able to reach the garden this week. But a group of truck driving angels had apparently filled the mud pit road with river rocks, so Neil was able to get through. I got in the chariot and went.
A brief side note here. I got in the chariot because I couldn’t find our little bike. Because it wasn’t at our house. Which happens sometimes, if one of us drives it somewhere and walks back, forgetting that we drove. (What can I say? We’re artists.) Chinua had no memory of driving it anywhere, and when I found it at the nearby 7-11, I accused him of sleep-driving, and he freaked out and we went so far as to discuss hiding the keys at night before I remembered that I had gone to 7-11 the previous evening and bought diapers. Then walked back. When you forget the motorbike and blame your husband for doing it in his sleep and then it turns out that it was you, I believe they call it eating crow.
So I got in the chariot, and drove over the river rocks, and we looked at the field and saw that the flood had come all the way to our kitchen door but had not come in. And the rest of the day became a dance between talking with construction workers and moving all of our things to get them out of harms way, piling things in mountains off the floor. To recap: surprise workers, lost bike, flooding river, no bridge. Just the sort of thing to snap you out of your melancholy stupor.
Update: The river had subsided a lot, to the point that unless there is another typhoon in China, we won't flood this year. We pray. And the bridge is still gone, but we are using the back roads carefully.