“How high is the water, mama?” – do you remember that old song by Johnny Cash? Johnny was singing about the mighty, muddy Mississippi, but around central and lower Hastings County these days we’re asking that same question about the Moira River and some other watersheds – including, in recent days, the Black River that runs through Queensborough.
Thanks to the CBC and so on taking an interest, a lot of you have probably heard about the flooding problems in the Foxboro area, just north of Belleville. But in the last couple of days we up north in Queensborough have started to wonder if roads, fields and properties here are entirely safe from a river swelled by spring runoff and lots and lots of rain. The river is as high as it has probably been in most people’s lifetime.
When I did my twice-daily check of it late this afternoon, I am pretty sure that the water was a little lower than it was yesterday. For sure it wasn’t any higher. So with any luck the river won’t make its way any farther outside its banks than it already has. But let me tell you, this time yesterday it was quite something to see, as perhaps you can tell from the gallery atop this post. Man, I couldn’t believe how close the water level was to the bottom of the Queensborough bridge. Here’s a little video I shot:
Anyway, I think it is very likely that we will all survive this high water. But meanwhile, I found a real treasure of a video when I looked up that Johnny Cash song. Here’s Johnny being asked about it on black-and-white TV by none other than the recently departed (and much-lamented) Pete Seeger. Johnny appears to be wired, and was very probably in his wild substance-abusing years. June Carter (possibly not yet June Carter Cash) looks on, silent and tight-lipped, as Johnny tells the story – and eventually gets to what I think we can all agree is a great song. Sing it for us all tonight, Johnny: