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Flush Day and other signs of progress


Fri, Sep 7th, 2007
Posted in Commentary



The porta-potty is gone from our front yard, leaving only a three foot square patch of dead grass and a strange memory. Last week we celebrated "Flush Day"-the day Rushford residents were told it was okay to flush toilets again. This week after two and a half weeks, came "Shower Day."

With a "can-do" attitude among the residents, and the assistance of a myriad of volunteers, flood clean-up has continued at a steady pace in Rushford.

I live near the new "dump" by the water tower, unofficially named Mount Mess. We can hear the rumble of trucks constantly, some hauling debris in from the damaged homes and businesses, some hauling it away. The pile never seems to shrink to us onlookers.

Around mealtimes, you can still hear the low horn of Red Cross trucks driving through town, followed by a voice on a loudspeaker. I can never hear exactly what they're saying, but I suspect it's some version of "come and get it!" The truck offers hot meals and cold drinks to anyone who asks.

Montini Hall is still the place to be, not just for the comfort food dished up there, but also for the camaraderie and the opportunity to hear flood news.

"Did you see how fast they took down the Kwik Trip building? I hear they can rebuild in less than sixty days."

"No kidding? Hey, did I see that the bank drive-up is open?"

"Yeah, opened Tuesday. Hey, I heard Stumpy might fire up his pizza wagon downtown somewhere. That'll be good."

I try to remember some of the things people have said. "Mother Nature is apologizing to us," Alfred Semerad said last weekend, commenting on the beautiful weather.

And just a week after the flood, our dentist, Dr. Marcoux, said to me, "I've had hurdles in my life, and I'm trying to think of this as just another hurdle. Okay, it's probably the biggest hurdle I've ever had...but still just another hurdle." Dr. Marcoux's office was severely damaged and he lost all of his dental equipment in the flood.

We've grown accustomed to the television trucks with their satellite dishes on top. Many of us haven't even seen the news since the flood, so we don't really have an appreciation for our fleeting fame. I call my mom occasionally to find out what's on the news about Rushford.

And speaking of famous, the Famous Rushford Flower Baskets hanging throughout town are a delayed casualty of the flood. They're dried out tumbleweeds now-Roger Colbenson and crew have had more pressi .....
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The church ladies and the loaves and fishes

Fri, Aug 31st, 2007
Posted in Commentary

RUSHFORD - Shakespeare said "Some are born to greatness; others have greatness thrust upon them." Betty Culhane belongs to the second group. The recent flood in Rushford resulted in displaced people, who were also, sooner than later, hungry. As the ..... 
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The perfect storm

Fri, Aug 31st, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Not many of us would consider the recent rains that brought such devastating flooding to our region, the perfect storm. Most would consider the perfect storm as one that would have brought its 10+ inches of rain, with us making note of only how the ..... 
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Loans to Rushford businesses may not be enough

Fri, Aug 24th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

When asked early last week whether the recent rainfall was a 50 year or 100 year event, Fillmore County Engineer John Grindeland shrugged his shoulders.

"Who can conceive of 17 inches of rain?" Grindeland asked rhetorically.

Call i ..... 
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We all must do our small part to rebuild Rushford

Fri, Aug 24th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Friday, August 18, was a pretty typical day in Rushford. At least for me. I dragged myself out of bed to go walk the high school track. The R-P football team was practicing next door on the practice field by 7:30 a.m. I like watching their practices ..... 
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The bogeyman is gone

Fri, Aug 17th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Karl Rove will be departing the White House at the end of August, leaving Washington, our government and the party of Lincoln in tatters. The brains behind George Bush, Rove's take-no-prisoners political tactics set the tone for this presidency, an ..... 
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Enough is enough

Fri, Aug 10th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

Had enough? Tired of the war? Tired of the government seemingly helpless (or is it hapless?) to deal with the problems directly in front of them? Tired of paying taxes and not getting the bang for your buck you had expected? Tired of the "rich" gett ..... 
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Eisenhower showed us how to get the job done

Fri, Aug 10th, 2007
Posted in Commentary

As a young boy I remember exploring the tall sand hills about a mile from where I grew up in Austin. At the time I was too little to know what they were to be used for.

A few weeks ago, I drove over that same hilly ground I first visited in ..... 
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Bush the Blacksmith

Fri, Aug 3rd, 2007
Posted in Commentary

As a philosopher, President Bush would make a good blacksmith.

The House and Senate are debating extending one of the most successful healthcare programs, the State Children's Health Insurance Program or SCHIP. Bush says he is opposed to the ..... 
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