June 21st, 2013 | Mark Zusman News | Posted In: Environment

Calgary's Flood

You think it rains in Portland? A brief (by necessity) dispatch from our Editor in Chief.

Calgary on June 21, 2013

I flew to Calgary yesterday to attend the Sled Island Music Festival, which has a loose partnership with MFNW, WW's annual music festival.  My flights got screwed up and I didn't land in Calgary until 10 pm, and I arrived in a city that is under siege and experiencing a 100-year flooding of the Bow and Elbow Rivers.

Much of the city has been forced to evacuate, roads and bridges have been closed and a number of the venues for this festival have been shut down. When I got a ride into downtown from the airport, the river was so high that it was brushing the underside of the bridge.

Suffice it to say, when I arrived at the Fairmount Hotel downtown, I didn't venture out.

This morning at about 7, the city shut down the power downtown, so I am sitting in a barely lit hotel lobby using WiFi that the hotel's backup generator is providing (though I am quickly running out of battery). More rain is predicted.

Outside, it's raining and the streets are plugged with cars and taxis trying to get to the airport.

As is the case with all natural disasters, events of this sort bring people together. I've had delightful conversations with an anesthesiologist from Cuba, a Department of Revenue agent from British Columbia, and Eric Andre, a comedian from Los Angeles who was to perform tonight. I say "was to perform" because this morning, Sled Island cancelled the rest of the festival.

The good news?  I brought an Elmore Leonard novel.

 
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