Update on my sister:
She got back into her house today. At the shelter, people had brought dry clothing and had taken their clothes home to dry them. People kept showing up all day with food also. She said it looked like there had been seven feet of water on the first level. The water was at about two feet when they arrived today and was down to two inches by the time they left. The smell is not good!
Her dining table had turned upside down and wedged against her china cabinet and prevented the cabinet from moving so her husband's grandmother's china is fine. She found concert tickets she had purchased for an upcoming concert floating in the water. She was so excited about those items.
She has lost her scrapbooks, her Goofy mug collection, her refrigerator is on top of her kitchen cabinets and there were knives floating in the water. She has a whole crew from her church showing up late this afternoon to pack up her upstairs to keep those items from mildewing and someone has donated boxes, bubble wrap and tape. She said FEMA will be out tomorrow to set up a trailer in her neighborhood.
It appears that she is the only one with flood insurance as the neighborhood had petitioned to have the area re-surveyed and removed from the flood plain. After that everyone but my sister apparently had canceled their flood insurance.
Might be heading out there this weekend to help her sort through things.
I lived in Nashville for 4 years and I'm having difficulty imagining it flooding there. Obviously the Cumberland is right next to downtown but it's not exactly the most impressive river ever + the city is built at a decent slope leading down to the riverfront... wild stuff. It's pretty hilly all around too, not the typical terrain you think of for a flood. Hope everyone's families get through it OK.
I don't know much about the geography of Nashville and the surrounding towns/cities, but from what I was told, it had rained several days for the past couple of weeks, saturating the ground, so when they had 13 inches of rain in one day it all just flooded the area. The rivers in the area just filled up.
According to my uncle, he was trying to leave Franklin this past Saturday afternoon to make his way to East Texas and was trapped in Franklin. He told me it took him two hours of changing paths just to try to figure a way out and couldn't (road blocks, flooded bridges, etc.). He and my aunt eventually left Sunday morning when it had, apparently, cleared up a bit, heading south through Alabama instead of his usual south-westward drive.
Chicken, hopefully your sister makes it out just fine, and good thing on the flood insurance (so few around the country have flood or even water damage insurance). I cringe at the thought of FEMA doing anything productive and not just staying out of the way. Am I correct in interpreting your remarks to indicate your sister collected mugs of Goofy, the Disney character? It really is interesting to me what people collect and consider losses in a disaster such as this.