Mudslides and the schedule slides

A week ago, during heavy rain, the wealthy enclave to the east of us experienced some horrific mudslides.  The Montecito mudslides have made the national headlines for days now since they occurred a week ago. The Santa Barbara area, at around 230,000 people, is a small community with about 3 degrees of separation between any two given people.  We all know people that have been affected by first the fires in December (my business partner list his house as did the head of our children’s school) and now the mudslides, with several people we know having lost their houses, and life in our area being noticeably different and somber over the last week.  Our friends in Montecito who’s houses didn’t get damaged, have been without gas, water, or power now for a week, and those are the ones that were able to stay in their homes and have not been forced out of the area for the last week.  This is on top of weeks of fire evacuation and smoke inhalation in December.

Here is one view of the extent of the damage.

Here is a picture a friend took of a giant boulder that rolled onto a road.

This is eerily similar to the boulder we found in the way of our basement.

The one on the road looks a lot bigger, and it is somewhat bigger.  The picture above of our boulder doesn’t show it in full.

The amount of mud they have to remove is huge.  Driving on the 101 freeway yesterday, I’d estimate I saw about 5 dump trucks every mile.

As you can see, they are clearly being used to carry mud.  Speaking of removing mud, since the mudslides happened, the 101 freeway to the south going to Ventura has been closed, as have been all the side roads that might take you around the closure.  Here is a picture a friend took of the freeway.

If it weren’t for the off-ramp sign, you might think that was a river bed.

Santa Barbara is a bit of an isolated area.  We have three ways in or out, the 101 freeway to the south, the 101 freeway to the north, and the 154 highway that goes over the mountain.  When any one of them is closed, it has a big impact on us.  Quite a few of the people that work in Santa Barbara come from communities to the north and south of us, or live in the Santa Ynez valley behind the local mountains.

About half of the folks working on our house come from down in the Ventura area, so the pace has slowed considerably as quite a few people are unable to get to us to work, including our cabinet makers.  The freeway is expected to be closed for another week yet.    The detour to get around the closure takes the trip from 30 minutes to 5 1/2 hours.

This is definitely pushing our timeline out a bit, as did the Thomas fire.

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