This past week, Columbia, SC has experienced historic flooding as rain fell from the sky, overflowed, collected on roads, rushed into businesses, and trapped people on their homes while they slept. Church services were cancelled last Sunday.
This past week, students didn’t have classes and businesses were closed. People went without water in their homes or had too much water in their homes. A boil advisory has been in place for days and will be in place for days to come.
I went back to work yesterday. I work at a dance store– it’s the perfect part-time job for me. I love interacting with the public, especially young dancers. I sell frivolous things that mean so much to dancers because whether you dance for fun or for a living, dance is so important in a dancer’s life.
But going back to work for me, just a block from one of the most seriously damaged areas of the city, was so important to me. It was time for some normalcy. It was time to restore what was ruined. I watched neighbors and dance teachers bring in young dancers to replace shoes and leotards. And it was so appreciated by the dancers. Studios opened and dance provided some escape for those that were affected deeply by the flood.
My coworkers family business was flooded. And it’s disasters like these that close small businesses. But people came from all over to help.
I hauled cases of water and supplies, but it didn’t seem like much. Going back to work is where I experienced some true peace in knowing that Columbia is filled with kind and generous people who take care of their friends, their neighbors, and strangers in need.
The Columbia Classical Ballet Company was flooded. Their brand new studio was filled with water that reached eight feet high. Dancers, many of them from far away countries, lost expensive pointe shoes and items in the flood. But I got to be part of the rebuilding. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Watching dancers receive gifted shoes was like watching Christmas morning. The Company will return to magnificent splendor this December with the Nutcracker.