Friday, February 3, 2012

Cabin Fever

It's been raining since mid-November, pretty much on and off. We've hade a whole lot more than our annual rainfall in 3 months. And even though things are looking beautiful and green at the moment, we aren't exactly having celebration drinks. We have been incredibly blessed, in that the rain has stopped for long enough for us to get the sheep work done, and cattle work done. So we aren't panicking about crops, or shearing or drenching etc. And more importantly, we aren't on or near a river. We are exactly half way between two major river systems that are currently experiencing the worst recorded flooding in history. So even though there is an inland flow that meanders through our 'place', it never does any major damage. We reap the benefits of water without all the negative side effects.

The ground is drenched.

My heart goes out to those affected; people who have lost everything, crops and income that are lost, livestock losses. Whatever the loss is, I feel deeply for people who are suffering, or who are yet to suffer.

This is three years in a row now. Three 'once in a lifetime' floods. Enough is enough. People in the country all love a bit of rain as much as the next person, but the floods, like everything, need to be in moderation. As far as our own experience goes, the first flood, in 2010, was a result of flooding from north of us. The water came downstream very quickly and caused untold devastation. I made a video of it, which you can watch HERE. It was a big deal at the time because it was supposed to be the largest flood in recorded history... and it was. We were cut off for about 2 or 3 weeks. We could drive about 1/2 an hour in any direction, and were lucky in that we could still socialise with our neighbours. It was quite an enjoyable time for us, albeit a little tiring.

The second flood, in 2011, was a result of widespread flooding. Queensland was largely affected, and many lives were lost. The flood here was not as severe, and many people were ready for it. Levee banks had been raised and people were prepared and well stocked. We certainly were, after having done the mother of all grocery shops at the coast before dashing home after New Years before we got stuck out. This time we were stranded for about two weeks, and it wasn't anywhere near as frustrating as the floods the year before.

This time is different again. We are already flooding as a result of some of the most concentrated local rain we have on record. And we haven't even been affected by the water heading south in the river system from the flooding up north. This time we are struggling to even get out of our property - not that it matters, because roads have been closed around us, effectively locking us in, anyway. Here are some pictures I took yesterday.

You exit my driveway and turn right, and this is what you see.

Once you drive through the water above, you are faced with this just ahead.  
We have no idea how long we will be stuck at home for this time. Every flood has been different.

But being at home is getting harder and harder this time around. CP hasn't been able to busy himself with 'farm jobs' and is starting to go a little crazy. He is suffering a bad case of cabin fever.

Not my hubby, but also losing his marbles.

So even worse than trying to keep a house tidy with 3 small children at home in wet weather; even worse than homeschooling your own children; even worse than mould growing on everything; and even worse than running out of bread and milk, is CP being inside the house with us! CP is not indoorsy at all! Anyone married to a farmer will testify to the fact that they are only happy when they are doing something. And by 'doing something', I don't mean playing on an ipad or playing on the Wii. CP is only content when he's outside having a HANDS ON Mr Fixit moment. And so I have been trying desperately to come up with more and more jobs for him as the floods wear on. I suggested marking out and starting plans for a tennis court. But it's too wet. Kristy from over at AnK Bowtique (who is flooded in at the moment - thinking of you!) suggested he make a bike rack, like her hubby did in earlier floods. I'm pushing that one at the moment... But he could also do a new hat rack, boot rack or any other rack... or he could work on my car, which is in dire need of tender loving care. He mows the lawn - every day - and then comes in and whinges and moans that I could be doing more.

So more than the floods themselves drive me crazy, it's my husband suffering a bad case of cabin fever that's really doing my head in. If only I could keep him busy and out of the house... I might actually make it through this bout of being stranded with my sanity still in tact.

Any other suggestions for husbands suffering cabin fever?


  1. Oh god - can totally relate. Thankfully I am not flooded in, but with all the rain we have had, it's been too wet for the husbo to be doing any 'real' work and he is bored shitless. Along with the husbo - the 2 year old is bored too as it's too bloody wet to do ANYTHING!

    My tip? Send him fishing DAILY....and if he hasn't caught a fish when he comes home, then send him back....with the kids! ;)

  2. Unemployed husband at home could be quite a problem. Perhaps he's got some old relative who needs help of some kind ; this will drag him out of the house for a while.

  3. Yes, not unemployed, just stuck at home due to flooding. Can't go to help Nyone out either because we are stuck. Lol

  4. Oh dear, nothing worse!!!!I suppose all the fences are fixed? Do you need a new gate anywhere? is he a man who loves to fiddle with metal in the shed!!! Are the shearing sheds in perfect condition already? Just suggestions of where the men in my family used to be found when they couldn't find anything else to do!
    Are all your stock safe? That water sounds as though it is closer this time.
    We are not flooding this year but have had 15 days straight of rain (I live in town so that is a relief!) I wish you well.

  5. Hahhahahaha, know it well! My husband leveled the driveway! all the potholes are now gone, Roundupped the driveway, creeping lawn into garden beds. I got him to put his laundry away. Tried to get him to declutter his wardrobe! Made him burn all the old paperwork. Today we went through the bowls of nuts and bolts and tools. Had him gather all the tools in the house and take them back to the shed. I wanted him to paint a couple of doors, but alas too wet. Tomorrow, I'm going to get him to cart more of my decluttering shite away. Just keep him busy! Our roads have reopened so I imagine he is going to go about tripping the light fantastic in the plane again. He went this arvo and got heaps of photos to and from Rowena from Moree.
    To stop the mould, just run a fan, apparently it doesn't take hold in rooms with moving air!

  6. Building stuff is all I can think of. Catching up on diary writing maybe. Sorting the DVDs out. Cleaning the pantry. Sorting the shed. Cooking dinner... LOL. Make the list long and he'll start thinking of things himself!

  7. LOL know the feeling. Not quite flooded in here this time - just plain too wet here to go anywhere to do anything.


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