Sunday, 22 November 2009

Good news and not so good news

The good news is that despite more rain overnight, the Derwent has dropped a few feet.

The bad news - it is still raining and we are due another inch this afternoon, apparently that can put 12" of water into the river.

More bridges are in danger of collapse and what is not mentioned on the national news is how many small roads are impassable due to debris and flooding. Both routes from our side of Cockermouth into the town are closed - we cannot get to the A66 to travel east. It appears our only way out at present is to go north, pick up the Maryport road, then head off towards Wigton. Management is certain he can get down the A591 to Keswick because he has a train to catch on Tuesday morning - we shall see.

The only thing we are in danger of running out of is fresh milk, and in the great scheme of things, that's not a lot to be fussed about. Unless our village shop/post office gets fresh milk next week then I shall be looking at a very long journey. Given the uncertainty about bridge safety and how long it might be before structures are reopened I'm thinking of going to Carlisle early next week and having a major dry goods and groceries shop - an 80/90 mile round trip instead of the usual 5 miles per week.

I am not complaining – our house is safe and we have food in the freezer. Management and I have often commented on the frailty of the infrastructure which supports 21st century living and the current situation shows just how quickly things can go very pear-shaped.

Had a lovely email earlier from my best friend at school who said What a terrible week for Cumbria it will take a lot of support, long after the media have left to get the area back on its feet. Perhaps the best the rest of us can do is to make a point of visiting the area next summer to help the economy back on its feet,

I think she is right.

I ought to use this time of enforced confinement to catch up on email and blogs, sort through a colossal mass of paperwork which needs to be filed, to clear through my "New Pictures" folder, to attend to all those jobs which get conveniently pushed aside however I cannot settle to anything or concentrate.


  1. The one thing I always found very useful when I lived 'out in the sticks' was a good supply of tinned food, powdered milk and a large well stocked freezer. The later being fine as long as the power didn't go off for more than 24 hours. As a single parent with 2 young children it more than once meant I could avoid travelling on frozen roads during periods of snow and ice.

    I've been looking at everyones pictures and wondering how quickly it will be relatively easy for everyone to get about, it sounds like your all in for a lot of extra miles. It's going to be a while before bridges and roads are repaired even if all the funding and manpower is put in place straightaway.

  2. Thanks Angela. I generally have a good stock in the cupoboards/freezer and I know Ann & Roger do too. Whilst I would like to put all the money we spend into the local economy, we are already hearing reports of stores in Maryport being virtually out of stock, and as it will be a while before C/mouth shops are open (the Co-op and Sainsbury's did not flood), I think a trip to Asda or Tesco for a big stock up will save us petrol and effort in the long run.

  3. Jayne, I had a problem finding potatoes yesterday in Keswick. I know what you mean about concentrating on anything, I just can't focus at all. I am trying to do some log cabin and mending a border on a quilt but keep coming back to my computer and all I want to do is tell everybody how catastrophic this is for our dear Cumbria. I keep telling the walkers on my other blog not to come because they will only make matters worse, but I agree with you, that next year we will need them all to help the economy. How long this state of chaos will last is also on my mind. I am sending a cheque to the flood relief which the Keswick Rotarians have started because I know that it will go to locals, but apart from that I feel so helpless.

  4. I think that all the shops which aren't directly flooded will be back to normal pretty quickly - certainly the bigger supermarkets with national warehousing facilities - apart from one or two supply hiccups from the road/bridge closures.

    Mind you, local travel diversions will affect you all for some time yet as they repair or beef-up bridges.

    It's the directly flooded small businesses which will be hit so hard - it's one thing being insured to pay for the loss of fixtures & fittings, quite another to have a no income whilst your premises is being dried out & refurbished...

  5. Hazel, you 100% on the ball. Sainsbury's have the national resources to get cleaned up and restocked instantly, so does Boots the Chemist. Nearly every other store on our Main Street is privately owned/family run.

  6. I am glad you are safe and have food on hand. I feel bad for the ones who are in a world of hurt.


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