I discovered Wednesday night that our basement was flooded. We've lived here going on eight years and until now, the closest the basement has ever come to flooding is a sort of dampness on the steps and floor just in front of the door, so I didn't even think to check on it until after the worst of the rain had stopped.
My first attempt at draining the basement (siphoning it out through a garden hose) was a spectacular failure.
After fishing the garage-sale Shop-Vac out of the basement with my old wooden street hockey stick while standing at the door, I spent part of Wednesday night and several hours yesterday sucking out the water out, six gallons at a time. Luckily, one of the electrical outlets in the basement is attached to the ceiling instead of mounted on the wall, so it was dry, and by sheer chance one extension cord was on the living level instead of in the basement, under water with the rest of them. I managed to reach the outlet from the door, so I didn't have to step in the electrified water (both the circuit breaker and the electric water heater are in the basement.) I've got most of the water out and am now left trying to figure out how to clean up the mudsludge that's left, while trying to keep ahead of the water that continues to seep through the uphill wall.
The stuff itself in the basement isn't all that important; much of it was stashed there eight years ago when we moved in and hasn't been touched since, but a lot of it was in cardboard boxes on the floor, and that's gonna be one major messy pain in the ass to clean up. Maybe I'll do that today; I can't wait too long or the mold will get a foothold.
That means I can't wait for the mudsludge to dry out a little bit. God, what a mess.
Still, I guess I got off pretty easy, after all, the President says I'm in the middle of a Major Disaster Zone.
* - MDZ = "Major Disaster Zone."