It's been raining.
March 13, 2017 4:09am CST
After quite a dry summer, our back yard has been looking a bit sad and brown. Yesterday however, the heavens exploded and made up for it in about 4 hours. I had a container in my back yard that showed almost 3 inches fell in that period. Our back yard was a bit of a wading pool, and I thought I might have to issue the guinea pigs some water wings, but we got away without any flooding. Some other families in our area and neighbouring suburbs were not so lucky. Houses were flooded and roads turned into rivers. I know this happens in a lot of places, but what was so strange was how isolated the flooding was. 2 or 3 houses in a dip would be decimated and then a few houses away, up a slight rise - everything would be fine. I drove home in the height of the storm and honestly wondered if I'd find the off-ramp from the motorway. The picture was taken about 2 minutes from home while I was crawling through yet another flooded spot hoping not to get stuck. The worry is that this is only the beginning of what is traditionally our wet season in Auckland, so many families may clean up just to be hit again. I only hope this is the worst that they face this year.
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The US Southeast had a very dry fall, leading to a large number of forest fires in our region, which is usual in an area as green as this. Several days, the smoke from fires 75-100 miles away made air quality here extremely dangerous, and I could both smell and see the smoke. After the fire that burned Gatlinburg, Tennessee (about 200 miles from me), it started raining and has been pretty soggy ever since.
• New Zealand
We had some nasty fires around New Zealand this year, and some areas have been suffering from drought. But the heavy rain has been hard on a lot of areas as it is ridiculous volumes in short spaces of time so there have been a lot of flash floods. At least with the slow steady stuff you have time to rescue some stuff.