Monday, April 6
Just Another Dreary Day?
Part 1 ... It had been raining for three or four days, and on the morning of January 29, 1957, the downpour had subsided to a dreary drizzle. The sky showed no sign of clearing. The early morning mist was even greyer and thicker than usual. The river had risen to a high tide. There was no immediate indication of a crest, and WKIC reported a rapid rise several miles above us. I am forced to admit that we were excited - and even happy. At this rate school would have to be let out, and the prospect of an entire day at home with a blazing fire delighted us. I caught my ride, which was, for once, early. One of the girls was driving her car to school, assuring us of a ride home in view of the certain dismissal. As we passed one of the street drains the water gushed up through it, brown and gurgling. The river was the one and only topic of conversation at Hazard High. The faces of students living above and below Hazard and in Woodland Park, our home, already showed marked anxiety. To our utter indignation, the bell for classes rang. Stunned and not a little incredulous we filed into English class. Not ten minutes of the period went by before our principal tapped on the microphone of the P.A. system. Instantly we snapped to attention. "Will all of you students from Lothair and Walkertown please board the busses immediately --" he was cut short by a round of enthusiastic hurrahs. Town students were, however, not dismissed. Restless and very nervous, we waited. Five minutes later a familiar voice cracked through the little brown speaker. "Put your coats on, and don't catch cold, and go home!" Laughing and giddy with excitement, one of my neighbors and I burst out the door of the school, dashing to catch our ride. But just as we reached the car, I saw another familiar vehicle coming up the hill. We turned and raced to meet my father. He had been on his way to get a pump for the basement and, after seeing the stream of high school students pour off the hill, had decided to come after me.