Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Waiting out the flood

Well, I had a quite an eventful day today. I’m currently interning for the local news station, where I follow around different reporters and mostly just watch what’s going on. I'll do little things to help like offer suggestions on who to interview or carry the equipment and sometimes- if there’s time to kill and they're feeling generous- they'll let me shoot some footage (I once shot like 30 seconds of cans for a food drive that appeared on the news- that was kind of cool). 

Sent to cover a story about a local fire, today we took the live feed van, which made it quicker and easier to upload video from the field. It was kind of like what you’d imagine a slightly out of date high tech van would look like: crammed, covered in switches and wires, with a tiny little shelf that served as a desk and a small black stool. All that was missing was the lone gunmen (seen x-files?).

Anyway, we’re in this van when we get the assignment to film some footage of a storm about an hour away. That wouldn’t be too hard except, as we drive into the storm, we realize the windshield wipers aren’t working properly. But, it’s only lightly raining, so it’s all right. Then it starts raining harder. Then it’s pouring. Then, it’s hailing.

So now we’re on the highway going 60 + mph with a windshield wiper that’s half off in a giant van with a satellite on the roof in the middle of a thunderstorm. The rain’s coming down in blankets and we can’t make out a thing, so we pull over to the side of the road. We could feel the ground shaking when the cars sped past, and we could see the lightning through the cascade of water in front of us. The driver wouldn’t let me take my seatbelt off, because he’d seen cars get hit on the side of the road before (apparently, it happens more than you’d think), so I sat there, strapped inside a metal vehicle waiting out the storm.

Sometimes that’s all we can do: wait.

I used to hate waiting. It was the worst feeling in the world with me, second only to boredom, which usually come hand in hand. But then I realized that waiting isn’t so bad when I don’t look at it as waiting, but look at whatever I’m doing for whatever it is. Today, it was staying inside a car during a storm. That wasn’t so bad. At least I wasn’t out in the rain. I had water and music and someone to talk to. Once I stopped looking at it as waiting for the storm to pass, and started looking at it as being in a storm, it became a completely different experience.

Still a scary experience, but one much more bearable than boredom. So with a little hope, faith, and optimism, we waited out the storm and made it back to safety (2 hours after I was supposed to get off work), only to be called to another flood. This one was right across the street from my school.

Here are some of the pictures:

I’m so glad that’s not my car! One thing that was nice to see though was a man with an SUV who was helping tow cars out to safety (seen in pic above). He didn’t charge them or anything, just enjoyed off-roading and giving people a helping hand.  


  1. Wow- those pictures! We have had flash flood warnings today here in Wyoming. The weather is crazy. Thanks for following me, I'm hoping to get to know your blog better. have a terrific weekend!

  2. I didn't know that you went to film a fire! I know that there are a lot wild fires going on lately, that's where all the smoke is coming from I presume haha.
    The only thing I would like to see is... more pictures!! :) :)