Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cataliticos and the Flood

A couple of years ago, the catalytic converters were stolen off our Sequoia while we were at church. I guess there’s a big market for them because they have platinum and other precious metals in them, and they’re really easy to remove by sawing two pipes. That explains the high number of “Catalitico y Mofles” shops around us.

Anyway, one afternoon we came out of Hobby Lobby and noticed the car next to us leave quickly. When we started the car, it was obvious something was wrong with our exhaust system – we quickly put 2 and 2 together and started following the car that left so abruptly. We got the license plate number and got on the phone with 911. When the guys in the car noticed we were following them, they started driving all crazy and making U-turns trying to lose us. They eventually did, and that was that. We went back to Hobby Lobby and waited for the police to come so we could file a report.

Luckily, this time they didn’t get away with the actual converters; they had sawed through one pipe and almost all the way through the other pipe. A friend from church referred us to his brother who would be able to weld the pipes back together.


This was on a Saturday, so I called my boss and arranged to take Monday off so I could take the car in for repair. It started raining Sunday night and didn’t stop. Storm drains in Phoenix can only handle so much, so by 5am, the city was starting to flood. I saw on the news that cars were floating down the freeway, and I realized that if I hadn’t taken the day off I would’ve been one of those. That was definitely a silver lining to the whole car situation! I’d rather be taking the car in to have pipes welded than be floating away by myself in the truck before the sun came up.

This is a shot from the TV – the area just after I get on the freeway every morning:

Rob made it to work on surface streets, but they cancelled school. It kept raining all morning, and all the water retention areas around our house filled up quickly. Some neighborhoods in Mesa flooded pretty bad, damaging houses, but our area was OK. I waited til later in the day to bring the car to the shop because I was pretty sure we didn’t need water in our pipes on top of everything else.

Then the power got knocked out, so we spent a lot of the morning outside watching the water. It was more than halfway up the poles for the basketball hoops in our neighborhood, so that’s at least 5 feet deep. It washed out the sidewalk that runs along the side of our house, and there were tons of kids out playing in the water. Kayaks and rafts, even. The kids thought I was the meanest mom ever because I didn’t let them go “swimming”. Chocolate-brown water with swift undercurrents leading to tiny storm drains? No thanks.

This is along the side of our yard. There’s a sidewalk between the kids and those boulders, and a tree is down in the neighbor’s yard.

The kids are pretty amused.
The water was curb-to-curb and filling all the greenbelts.

About a week later, a turtle showed up in our garage. No idea how it got there! We kind of wonder if it had something to do with the flood. Luckily one of our friends has a turtle and was happy to take this little guy in. He was very cute, but we have no idea how to take care of a turtle!


Saturday, September 20, 2014

Erin is Growing Up