Flood Recovery and Archeological Findings


“Today’s Rubble” DS Phone Photo

The flood recovery has turned into an archeological dig!  What was thought to be a bunker underground turns out to be a concrete platform of a former entrance.  The aggregate of the present entrance was just poured over top in making the patio.

The discovery of 14 vases along an underground wall gives the feeling of having fallen onto a midden site where the everyday artifacts of former occupants of the property placed their containers as a memory of their existence.  Perhaps it was a time capsule, or more cynically, a hope to catch any future drips down to the foundation.

Rotten and missing wood, black drywall, and insulation like spider webs peel off the walls like layers of an onion.  In place of geological stratification, man-made construction strata reveals its faults as the concrete saw and jackhammer descend the substratum of over a half century of renovations.  Stripes of asphalt, topsoil, soil, rocks, gravel, expose in brown and grey the passage of time.  Every difficult seam excavated adds cost to the final project.  This revelation, not having the hopeful expectation of a renovation, has added excitement to a banal flood recovery project.  It has turned into a walk back into the history of the land itself where our own footsteps fall.

The disruption continues day after day after day.  As the concrete saw and jack hammer slow and the dust settles inside and the soil and rubble are piled in 6-foot-high hills outside, this project feels spiritual.  The project is costly and the extent of the work is somewhat unknown.  There is a project manager who oversees the comings, goings and findings.  The work is restorative and messy and underground.  There is an element of mystery:

  • The copper pipe with the pin hole in an odd place had been leaking water for years unseen and out of reach.
  • The drainage pipe coming from and going to nowhere with no downward angle and 3 feet higher than the water table.

Is there a rhythm of fall and redemption in the pipes, drains and trenches?  The hose washes away the staining soil on the patio.  The project manager states: “I aim to have you dry and tucked up here this winter.”  In my fear of what will be found, I also trust in the expertise of the kind manager.  Can I also rely on God to keep the rest of my messy life in a semblance of order over the coming winter isolation of the pandemic?

My inner life’s layers of ossification have been laid bare.  The interruption brings spiritual repair too.  As the Spirit jackhammers and digs out what is decaying from my life, I wait for a renewal of hope to rise from the rubble as I listen in silence.



“Archeological Find” DS Phone Photo

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