By: Jonathan Xu
Not many people have experienced severe flooding from a hurricane, even though it’s not necessarily something to look forward to. During the August of 2017, a category four hurricane called Hurricane Harvey hit Rockport Beach. Since I live in Sugar Land, which is about 170 miles away from Rockport, we got hit hard with a lot of rain and tons of flooding. I know that 170 miles doesn’t seem very close, but it’s nothing to a monster storm. It was kind of a fun experience for me though, because I encountered one of nature’s most feared beasts without having to run into much disaster. Although many people couldn't have said the same and have lost much during this disaster, and I am very aware of that. This rare episode from my life taught me to make the best of a situation and it might just work out positively for you!
Harvey began as a tiny Tropical Depression towards the south of the Atlantic Ocean just north of Suriname. Recently in school, we have been doing hurricane tracking and plotting the coordinates of hurricane paths in science. Suspense was building up at school and a few people were talking about how Harvey could possibly hit us. But most people dismissed it as impossible. A couple days later, though, the hurricane had already built up to a Ccategory 1 hurricane and there was a good chance that it could cause mass flooding in the coastal area of Texas. The next thing I know, school has been canceled due to the hurricane. Somehow, the skies remained clear with just a few lonely clouds wandering about. Then, dark menacing clouds rushed in from the southwest, clouds multiplying rapidly until even the sky seemed so congested that no more clouds could possibly fit.
Finally, the rain hit us. It came down in incessant sheets as the clouds finally let loose their torrents of rain as they have held onto for so long. That was all there was for days on end. Fortunately, we still had electricity, water, and even a stable internet connection during this time. Some of my close friends had already driven to shelters due to the threat of flooding. By then, the floodwaters had already covered the entire sidewalk outside our house. By now, I was getting apprehensive, and that my friends had the right idea to evacuate before the water got inside their homes. At last, the rain that had been driving me crazy, stopped.
The rain had stopped, so that was a good thing. But unfortunately, the streets in my neighborhood were still flooded up to the sidewalks. Remembering that there were two kayaks in my garage, my father and I hauled them into the flooded street outside my house. Right outside my neighborhood, there was a small man-made lake that was completely flooded to the sidewalk. The feeling of kayaking through the flooded streets gave me a sense of freedom, as I was finally released from being cooped up in my house for days on end.