That's us. I wish Blogger would let me show you the photographs of what we had to put in place last night. Sandbags, large sacks of John Innes No. 2, and sections of leftover stone flags from the hall, all stacked in the porch, keeping the water at bay - we hoped - as the rain continued remorselessly to fall. The brook, so musical in its summer gurgling, roared; a torrent of strong dark tea - or rather, water straight off Exmoor - spilling over its retaining wall and surging madly down our road.
Everyone was out until after midnight, protecting their doorways as best they could. We had walked home from dinner with a friend at the top of the hill, growing ever more alarmed as we approached our own home, gradually wading ankle deep in the swirling brown water, and dreading the possibility of discovering a flooded cottage and outraged cats.
The Gardener, sleepy from dinner, including a surfeit of lemon posset, and intending to sleep within five minutes of getting home, turned immediately back into a Proper Practical Bloke. Wide awake, changing sodden shoes for wellies, finding the torch and the sandbags (no mean feat in our chaotic linhay) and organising a barrier in the porch to divert any sudden surge of water, he also checked on elderly neighbours, exchanged opinions with others on the state of the brookside vegetation further up the road, and finally tumbled into bed two hours later, leaving a collection of sodden clothes downstairs.
Meantime, I flapped anxiously about indoors, lifting rugs, shifting precious items up above water level, making cups of tea (so essential in any dramatic situation!) and trying to stop the thoroughly-rattled animals from fighting each other or getting underfoot. I didn't sleep until after 3, and was up again at 5, to find the road clear, apart from the pebbles and mud that the water had washed down. We hadn't been flooded, but others had (see here).
But the sand/compost bags will remain in place; it rains and rains and rains....