Tropical Storm Allison, 10 Years Later: Where Were You?
Portions of Houston flooded like never before; other parts of the area didn't get hit much harder than a typical summer system might deliver.
The Texas Medical Center flooded, as did Jones Hall; highways near downtown turned into 15-feet-deep lagoons, billions of dollars in property was lost.
Our house was flooded out in a process that was in parts utterly boring, scary and funny. (We recounted the tale here, in "Wading For Godot.")
A lot of Houstonians have their own story, of course. We asked and you delivered. Feel free to add your own to the comments.
I was at Edwards Marquee off I-10 and Silber watching Pearl Harbor. When the movie ended we left through the back exit door and ran through the rain to get to the truck. As were trying to exit the parking lot around midnight when then noticed we couldn't go anywhere because the feeders were flooded.
We spent the night stranded in the parking lot with several others until 8 a.m. Worst part, I had to pee all night and couldn't go nowhere thinking the movie theatre was closed. Come to find out people who attended later functions just stayed in the theatre watching movies. Cars were parked on the overpasses and people were walking and watching. And here we thought it was simple rain that was passing through...
I was out at Bar Houston with a coworker. We were mad that our other friends had bailed (we kept saying that it was only rain and it always rains in Houston). I had to go home early...so I was lucky because other people we knew who went out later got stuck. Fortunately for me I lived on the 3rd floor. So those of is who weren't flooded helped others who weren't so fortunate.
The morning after Allison had done the bulk of its damage, my grandparents -- both in their 90s -- called to ask me for my help in cleaning up their water-logged home. They had lived in the Timbergrove Manor subdivision since the mid 1950s without a single drop of flood water entering their house; during Allison, they got 18 inches courtesy of White Oak Bayou. I only lived a few blocks away in the Heights, but couldn't any closer than about six blocks away driving.
I waded in that direction as I watched water hit the 11th Street bridge and shoot 20 feet in the air like a geyser. I made it about two blocks down T.C. Jester, felt a fairly sturdy current swirling around me in the waist-deep water and realized that, unlike the feelings of my Klingon counterparts, today was NOT a good day to die. A couple hours later, I drove my truck down the esplanade, avoiding a horse that had broken loose from its pen, and made it to hours' worth of stripping damp carpet and tearing out sheetrock.
Crazy night. I saw people riding jet ski's down Richmond. I always regretted not doing a cannonball off of the Kirby overpass that night. Never get another chance for that. Will never forgot all of the cars completely underwater with their headlights still on. Eerie and beautiful.