If I close my eyes I can see it as it was before that night; quaint little buildings with lit up signs, craft and antique shops filled with assorted treasures. I used to love walking up and down the street late at night after the rest of town went to bed. It was the only solitude I found back then in a town full of busybodies. If only I could turn back time and bask in their attention.
They said the river, fifty feet below Wood Town, was too far to be a flood problem. I guess they were right. It wasn’t the river that caused its destruction. Six inches of rain fell that Saturday evening just before dinner. A torrent of water rushed down the hills above town, sweeping everything with it. Cars and people were tossed like sand in the waves. Two hundred year old stonework ripped from foundations. Chunks of sidewalk joined the churning rubble as it raced to the river.
Now all that remains is darkness and debris. Everyone is gone, all of them, young and old. Crumbled bricks lay scattered amidst gutted out buildings that once held thriving businesses and homes.
I have plenty of solitude now as I complete my nightly walk. No one is here to pester me with questions or babble about the latest gossip. I wish they were. My feet feel heavy, like waterlogged wood, but they leave no marks in the silt filled street. The dead leave no prints.