Riding the Rollercoaster Flood in Thailand

It's no fun living in water.

Croc moving in.

Flowering Pip tree outside my house- just a bit of beauty

This whining, complaining or whatever you’d like to call it to others is something new for me. I read a lot of very good blogs where the writer pores out their feelings and bad experiences and I admire them for it, but it’s not something I do well.

I’m tired of this flood and it’s beginning to get to me and I’m safe in the mountains. I really shouldn’t worry about possessions and I do try to put it in the back of my mind. Of course my wife is worried as well. Our house in Pathum Thani had survived so far. It’s right in the middle of some of the heavy flooding. Places like Klongs 1 through 8, Rangsit, Klong Luang and Lam Luk Ka are in the news every day and night.

We were there a day before the dike broke for Klong 5 and there were constant sirens and loudspeakers warning of what was coming. After a week of this we left to go back to the farm. My wife had our little house built 15 years ago and we’ve never had a problem with flooding. We’ve lived in it for the past 8 years.

We went to the farm and the waters came. We couldn’t get in touch with anyone and we were told all the roads were closed into the area. Now, I can take water damage, clean up an all the other things that go with flooding. But the ups and downs of hope and despair aren’t as easy. When our area becomes the track they play on TV between shows I start the worry over and over again. Mostly about our neighbors.

A few days ago my wife’s cousin made a trip to see our house. She lives a few miles away and the waters hadn’t reached her house. We learned that the small area where our house is was still out of the water. We were excited. Then two days ago she called and said her house was now flooded. We worried. Today my wife finally was able to get through to our next door neighbor. Water filled our street but it was not getting in our house. We had added dirt and footings to raise it 3 feet above the ground level when it was built. All but 1 house on our street was built that way. We were happy.

Last night the government put in emergency control of our area for the next two days. There was a new release of water from the north and no one is allowed into our area. We worry.

In Thailand the water gates to dams, canals and other flood control methods are controlled be the local government and the PM can only ask them not to release water or let it in. The local areas try to insure there will be enough water for planting and people during the dry season. Now, it seems, they hold the water until it gets too high and then release it all at once with no regard or pattern. There really needs to be federal control in these situations.

Thailand is also the largest breeder of crocodiles in the world and you guessed it—many of these farms have flooded and the crocs have escaped just to add to the fun. So now the giant lizards around our house may have some company.

Enough about my petty woes. Hundreds of thousands of people are suffering and it’s not going to stop for at least 6 more weeks. I really hurt for those people. The dry season has arrived here at the farm but it’s still raining in Bangkok. Please pray for the people of Southeast Asia. This is my last flood report—unless something really bad happens, lol—until we are able to return to our house. Next week you’ll read about the Writer who stayed with rubber tree farmers. Thank you for reading.

I’d like to add that most of the pictures I put up were not taken by me. Every time I was in the rushing waters my camera was either at home or I was concentrating on staying alive.

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18 responses to “Riding the Rollercoaster Flood in Thailand

  1. Oh Dannie, my heart does break for the people of Thailand affected by the floods. It’s hard to imagine the devastation in Bangkok.
    I’m glad you and Julee are okay and have each other. Stay safe my sweet Southern man.
    eden
    xox

    • It’s is always… always good to hear from you, Eden. My heart alos goes out to the thousands of people suffering. It’s been going on for do long now that some of the smile are returning as people adapt, but there’s more bad coming before it gets better. We are safe and that eases my mind. Thank you, sweet Eden.

  2. Wow, this is heartbreaking. I was in Thailand the week of a flood in late may – we were very close to getting stuck in the middle ourselves, but left Phuket the day before. I hope your home and people stay safe!

    • Thank you for commenting, Eritta. Can you imagine that it has only gotten worse since you were here last. I hope your stay in this beautiful country was good and you’ll soon return. Most of the resort areas and islands are doing good and as beautiful as ever. I love Puket.

  3. Oh my goodness, Dannie, I’ve been thinking about you and the people of Thailand ever since your last post. Everyday, I await to get news from you, hoping that things will turn around. I can’t imagine what it’s like to be facing all this, what with the crocs now in the mix also. Until you mentioned it, I didn’t even know this could be yet another problem. I fervently hope things will turn around very, very soon for you all. You and your wife stay safe.

    Natasha

    • Thank you for you kind words, Natasha. The crocs are a bad new item but most will be rounded up or make it to someones plate. They’re in more danger than the people around them, lol.

      The added bad news it the water is getting much higher and it’s not over yet. Bangkok is refusing to open one of the major gates to the sea and all the water is backing up to our area. The reason: They allowed houses to be built below the gates and they don’t want to flood them. Someones going to lose. But we are safe.

      I think the real problem coming up is lack of drinking water. Even in the dry areas. We went to a major store today and not only didn’t they have bottled water but they filled the area where it is stocked with softdrinks. We do have a well but will have to boil the water if it comes to that. One of the things we can do is offer our clean water to our neighbor. I really fear the spread of disease coming out of the flooded areas.

      Officals say it will be six more weeks before the water starts to drop. I’m pretty sick of the flood!

  4. Dannie, I do feel your pain and I will put you and the people of Thailand in my prayers. I was in an area this summer that experienced, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes. Two of the three are not normal for the area. Devastation is hard to watch and more, hard to live with. You may write about something besides the floods because as writer’s we have the capacity to create the HEA. It’s hard to image, but that HEA will prevail.

  5. Thank you so much for your words, Nancy. Isn’t that the great thing about being a writer. We can and do bring the good things out of our thoughts and make them so others might be uplifted from our written words. My daydreams live in the Happy Ever After and I try to make that come out in my writing.

    The floods are so real by being here and seeing it but there is much suffering all over the world many people may not give it a lot of thought– just trying to get through their own hardships. It is heartwarming to know that people do care and do pray. It mean much to the people here.

  6. This is one case where I can say unequivocably: Forget the camera – concentrate on your and your wife’s lives!!!!

    I had not heard about the flooding in Thailand! What section – Central, N, S, E, W, NE, etc.? I’ll tell Josh. They have probably reported it over here, but once the political rehtoric started picking up around here last summer, I have refused to turn on the news or network TV. I do not want to listen to all that BULL**** spewing out of the mouths of people who ought to know beter! I’ve got way more than a year of this claptrap to avoid!

    Watch out for crocs, stay as dry as possible, help those you can, and let me know if you need, or any of your neightbors need supplies that I could have shipped to you!

    XO Paula

    • Hi Paula and thank you for your offer. The floods are from North Thailand all the way to Bangkok and affecting millions of people. It’s been going on for over three months and near Bangkok it’s only getting worse. My wifes cousin, who lives about two miles from our house in Pathum Thani, reports the water is still rising. Julee and I are safe in Issan but getting bottled water is nearly impossible. Tell Josh Issan is okay but places like Sukothai, and the entire main river basin are flooded.
      This is the reason I haven’t been commenting on your blog as much as before. Internet is sometimes very slow and all I can do is read.

      Thank you for your offer of help, Paula, but right now I think your prayers for the people are the best thing. The Thai’s have the supplies but getting them to the people is the dificult part.

      I agree with the useless crap on network news. It’s the same here normally. I thought that had all gone away for a while but now it’s coming back in an effort to control the country.

  7. Dannie – I meant to comment on the last report, which was relatively mild compared to this one. I’m so sorry you and Julee are going through this and sorry for all that are affected.

    I’m writing this on my lunch break, so I’ve got to go, but just know that we have you in our hearts.

    Kath

  8. Thank you, Kathy. We are getting many emails and comments of support and that really warms our hearts! We are safe and that’s all that really counts.

    A neighbor finally made it to our area after the last big surge of water. She had to go by boat. Our house is flooded but she says it’s not too deep. I dread the clean up but that’s life.

    On the bright side. There may be a new motorcycle in my future, LOL Depending on book sells.

    Thank you for making me smile!

  9. Hi Danny

    I found your report whilst trying to get information on our house, we are currently overseas, do you know how bad the flooding is in Khlong 4 about 1 km south of Yamaard School and 4 kms from Lum Lukka Road, any info would be grateful. Wishing everyone well who is flooded.

    • Hi Mark. I haven’t been to that area but I’m pretty sure I know where it is. Eveything towards Lam Luk Ka is underwater. Not sure how deep. The bad news is it’s getting deeper right now but should improve in another week. Everything is underwater in Klong Luang. The main six lane road has been reduced to one lane and may close soon. We live at Klong 5 very close to the Supreme Artist Museum and it is at least a meter deep. Our neighbor had to take a boat in to see the area. Never in my dreams could I imagine anything like what’s going on. We’ve been up in Pak Chong for 2 weeks waiting to get back. I believe your street is on the otherside of the big canal going up to Nakon Nayok. I wish I could be more encouraging but it’s not good. The Thai people are suffering more and more and it seems some of the problem is politics. One side won’t let the water through trying to make the otherside look bad. I’m pretty sick of Thai politics but what can one do? The King finally came out and said let the water flow to the sea so hopefully thing will get better. There are people and houses that have been in the water for 3 months or more. I certainly wish you the best of luck with you house. I have your email and when things change and I can get down there I’ll let you know what I find. My wife’s cousin who lives near Wat Tamaghi sp? hasn’t left and she gives us daily report of what she can see out of her windows. She can’t leave except in a boat. Some of the big neighborhoods are pumping a lot of water out– probably towards my house, LOL. I saw the new on Klong 4 in Klong Luange and they had sandbaged some of the areas. If you live in a big neighborhood them there’s a chance things migh not be too bad. Best of luck! I’ll send you my email if you want to talk.

    • Thank you for your prayers, Diana. We are actually in good spirits right now– may not be when we start the clean up. PM say flooding may continue for another month in our area. As long as a croc doesn’t move in we’ll be okay, LOL. I may try to go down and get a boat to inspect but I keep thinking what’s the point. It’s only stuff and my poor motorcycle– she’s not stuff, lol.

  10. Can’t believe I missed this post – glad you made it out alive (lol). You’re right – things like that are really scary but in the whole scheme of things there are always people much worse off than we are. I definitely wouldn’t like the crocs though!

    • It’s been a year since this event and I have to tell you that every time it rains hard we still watch the water in the canal with trepidation. IT’s almost like being through a battle. Thank you for commenting, Linda.

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