Card­well groans with wet weight

Townsville Bulletin - - News - re­gional edi­tor John An­der­sen john. an­der­sen@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au Townsville Bul­letin Thurs­day, March 17, 2011

RE­BUILD­ING: Deb Eales in front of her Card­well home which was badly dam­aged by Cy­clone Yasi CARD­WELL needs more rain now like Gen­eral Custer needed more Si o ux a nd Cheyenne fir­ing ar­rows at him at Lit­tle Big Horn.

Yes­ter­day morn­ing when the rain slammed down be­fore day­light, you could just about hear the pop­u­lace of Card­well groan while ly­ing in bed un­der their ceil­ings of orange and blue tar­pau­lins. And then as the day grew and the black clouds cir­cled, d r o p p i n g r a i n i n t e r mi t - tently, the lo­cals could only hope it would go away and that pre­dic­tions of an­other del­uge were off the mark.

Down on the jetty Karl McGree was toss­ing a pop­per into the grey sea as smoky black clouds floated like bat­tle­ships across the peaks of Hinch­in­brook Is­land.

The rain sent peo­ple there on the beach, run­ning for their cars.

FEISTY: Karl McGree’s barra-hunt­ing trip turned sour

Down in the wa­ter, a me­trel o n g S p a n i s h m a c k e r e l slammed into a school of mul­let.

Karl was look­ing for barra, not mack­erel.

‘‘ If he takes this pop­per, I’ll lose all my line,’’ he said.

Fur­ther up the beach and one street in, Deb Eales had just wound up a meet­ing with a struc­tural en­gi­neer who had driven up from Air­lie Beach to in­spect her and hus­band Gary’s re­sort-style home, which was ripped apart in Cy­clone Yasi.

The cou­ple has worked on the Amer­i­can re­al­ity tele­vi­sion show Sur­vivor for the past six years and travel the world set­ting up lo­ca­tions a nd a s s i s t i ng wit h p r o - duc­tion. They’re away for six months of the year, liv­ing in the re­mote re­gions where the top rat­ing se­ries is made. They are due to head off again to an­other lo­ca­tion in a fort­night and are fu­ri­ously try­ing to get the in­surance de­tails com­pleted be­fore they leave.

To say it’s a drama is an un­der­state­ment. Their roof has gone and there is struc- tu­ral dam­age to the house it­self. Even the in-ground fi­bre­glass pool was smashed by mis­siles be­ing hurled about in the height of the storm.

Be­cause of the dam­age to the house, elec­tric­ity has not been con­nected and they are still us­ing a gen­er­a­tor for power. They are re­silient peo­ple but wish things were mov­ing a bit faster.

The rain last week didn’t help and with more around, there is a feel­ing of foreboding. Deb points to the pool which is full of wa­ter.

‘‘ That was empty be­fore the rain started last week. That pool takes 88,000 litres and now it’s full,’’ she said.

Mean­while, the fore­cast is for show­ers over the next few days.

Townsville fore­caster Mario Tor­risi said it would still be wet when Prince Wil­liam vis­its on Satur­day.

‘‘ I doubt the word ‘ fine’ will be in the fore­cast on Satur­day, but Prince Wil­liam’s pres­ence should brighten ev­ery­one’s day,’’ he said.

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