I was so relieved to receive e-mails from Greeks living in Brisbane, saying that everybody in the boarder area was well and safe – even though some friends living in low lying areas close to the river got “wet feet” as waters flooded their two storey homes with water level reaching up to one meter in the house..
Their e-mails speak of devastating time in Queensland and of dangerous water masses coming from the swollen Brisbane River. They thank God for being lucky enough to live on higher level areas.
They report of electricity cuts, of tons of mud, of unbelievable smell but most of all they report of an extreme outbreak of solidarity among the people.
I dare publish one of those touching e-mails sent by Tony, a 85 years old Greek, whose parents migrated to Australia in the beginning of 1900. Tony lives in Brisbane. He writes:
“The big job lies ahead to clean up, don’t know if you have ever experience floods. The mess that is left is unbelievable, mud up 10cm thick in some cases may need complete rebuilding. We went through the 1974 floods again we were spared but we helped our friends to clean up the mud and the smell you would not believe the smell remains for ages.
When the power is back I will take my trusty high pressure water blaster to give him a hand. In times of adversity you have to help. Iit is amazing to see perfect strangers helping out where they can filling sandbags, rescuing people on roof tops, rescuing animals. It makes you believe in human nature.
We went shopping yesterday and the supermarket shelves were half empty fruit and vegetables were almost non existent and I do not see an improvement in the foreseeable future as the farmers have been inundated with water and crops ruined. I feel for the farmers first drought mow floods.”
I also received some ‘scary’ pictures taken by John, who lives in Bundaberg.
The floods that hit Australia are considered to be “‘once in 200 years” and have claimed the lived of 31 people in Queensland.