Well, it rained like the flood was a-comin’ yesterday. Took me two hours to get somewhere not-that-far away, but along the way I saw some things that convinced me some people out there–especially those who live in basements–will not be having a very good Chuseok. (And I didn’t even think of the people traveling to their hometowns, either, which this article mentions.)
In Yeokgok, I don’t think there’s a lot of that. Still, I think Yeokgok was far from the worst-hit area. I mean, look at the photo in this report! (Or even worse here on Twitpic.) We were not wading through knee-deep rain. But even around here, I saw not only some blown-apart areas of pavement (where workmen had paved over manholes — who knows why? — and the pressure caused by rainwater runoff blew off both the manhole cover and the few inches of pavement above it), but also a couple of basement shops having water pumped out onto the street.
If it’s a business, it’s one thing. (It sucks, but you don’t have to sleep there.) But when it’s your home, it’s quite another, and I’m pretty sure some people are going to have to celebrate their Chuseok in unseasonably damp conditions. It’s hard enough being poor, but when natural disaster overwhelms the local system for whatever reason (say, the sewers can’t handle the heavy rains), being poor goes from bad to much, much worse.
I was disagreeing with someone last night about whether the “4 Rivers Restoration Project” as they’re now calling it will actually help to deal with floods like this. (My net response was, “Well, it might, but I don’t know how a canal would help with that. And I do think it’s been greenwashed so hard we don’t know what to believe about it.”) But I do hope some way of dealing with heavy rainfall can be devised. Hmm. Did the Cheongyecheon help? From this picture, looks like like it might have… much as I’m loathe to admit it.
Anyway, here’s hoping for no more rain, even though the sky is overcast. But what’s this I hear about low temperatures and high winds? A Chuseok to stay home for, then… and inside.
For those wanting to wish on the full moon, since the sky is too cloudy — and I imagine it’ll stay that way — here you go!