Friday, June 11, 2010

Tiny Town Two Years After

This aerial photo was taken in November of 2008 by a local man.  The empty blocks are where houses stood, and yet five months after the tornado the final demolition of the churches and the schools still needed to be done.  
Today, June 11th, is the 2nd anniversary of the tornado. You can read the links in my sidebar under the heading of tornado memories if you want to see pictures and hear our story.  I wrote about it in five installments last year.  This post is about where we are today.

Where are we?  Still in recovery mode. There are a lot of new homes; yet, there are still quite a few empty lots.  We still go to school in trailers-- and will continue to do so this fall. 

And yet...
Our church should be finished by mid-summer!  I can't wait.

Our schools, on the other hand, are a little futher behind.  The hope is that the building will be complete by the first of next year.  They have built a few extra teacher workdays into the winter break, so teachers can have our rooms ready to start 2nd semester in a new building. 
This is the front of the new high school.  It is kind of hard to picture the final result right now  (And how sad is that that there is bindweed making itself at home on the contruction fencing?!  Yep, the fence has been there awhile!)
The photo above shows the three wings of the new high school.  My wing is the middle one.  I have no idea which room will be mine, but it doesn't really matter--it won't be in a trailer!
And this is a photo of our new middle school.  As you can see, it looks like all the buildings are progressing at about the same rate. 

Our new elementary school is in a new location. The construction crew for this building is the only one that doesn't have to attach to an existing structure, so their work should go a bit faster.  However, new roads were needed.
This new road and sidewalk will go right past the new elementary, which was built on land that was previously a pasture on the edge of town.  
They also paved an existing road and put in a sidewalk so that the town kids can walk to school via the back way.  

We've come a long way in two years.  Seeing the devastation during the first few days, it is hard to believe how far we've come.  

However, I miss our old town.  I miss the old homes and the shaded streets.  I miss our old schools.  There was so much history that went down with the buildings and trees. 

I guess we've been writing a whole new history.  And what a story to tell...! 

We're lucky/fortunate/blessed to be here to tell it.


FlowerLady said...

What a difference time can make. Out of devastation comes newness and growth. I'm glad you and yours survived and are moving along in your lives.

I look forward to seeing your new room.


B. Meandering said...

The indomitable human spirit--such a blessing!
A new room will be wonderful, but I understand your feelings about the parts of the town that were lost. My little town is on the historical records as a Victorian Village. We have quite a few lovely Victorian "ladies" gracing our streets---I can't imagine this town without them. But I know that we would persevere as you all have.

Kim said...

When we live with something day after day, we sometimes miss the nuances of growth, just like with our own children. Thanks for sharing the glimpses of new life and hope in your community. From the outside looking in, the signs are there for building new memories. Blessings to you all!

SEB said...

Oh Mrs. E when ever you write about Tiny Town I get teary eyed. I think its the lost visual and physical history that does it to me. I was the 4th generation to go to high school in the old building. The auditorium pictures always get me the most though. I do love the progress though. The new churches are beautiful. It is always fun to drive through town and look at the new homes and all the work still being done. June 11, 2008 is burned into our brains but, Tiny Town is doing just fine!

P.S. I may have to come see you at the pool one of these days. :)

Gayle said...

I can't imagine how sad the devastation has been for everyone in your town. I know that it will never be the same, but it is good to see the construction progressing.

Mary said...

I know everyone will be happy to be in new schools and out of trailers. It's always sad when nature takes pieces of history.

Shannon said...

I have thought of you a lot since we seem to be having storms here every night lately. I would miss the old too...

Katie (Can't Get There) said...

And what a story for the kids to tell their kids. "When I was in high school..." What a hard but invaulable life lesson for the kids - to learn that community triumphs over everything. :)