Old man river

The old lady looks skeptic.
«We are journalists».

«Journalists? We don’t want any journalists here», she says without opening the door more than the three inches she needs to lay her skeptic eyes upon us.

After a few seconds of psychological warfare there in the doorway Ingrid (91) gives in, and breaks the silence.

«Just wait, I’ll ask him anyway».

A minute passes before slow footsteps are heard and the three-inch door is swung wide open.

«He is in the living room», she says, and turns her back to us without further explanation.

Ingrid’s husband, Oddvar (92) has been living in Oppdal, south of Trondheim all his life (except the year he spent as a farmer in South Dakota just after the war). Now he sits at his desk in a corner of the living room, flipping through some old protocols from Båggåstronds Ungdomslag, written sometime in the 1930’s.

Oddvar is deeply fascinated by the local history of Oppdal and has written two books on the subject. If anyone is able to put the flood into perspective it must be him.

«Goddag», he greets us, and looks curious through his greasy glasses.

«Good day to you too. We are journalists who want to ask you for an interview about the flood.

«This one is nothing compared to the one we had back I 32».

«Yes. It was really bad back then. The water almost flooded my doorstep. And then it was the flood in 1968. Bad as well, I tell you.»

«So this time was just a little sprinkle?»
«It was some water this time too, but nothing like in -32, that’s for sure»

«But you and your wife are in your 90’s, I guess it must have been a bit scary to see the water rise?»
«It rose in -68 too, and in -32»

«Sure, but you were 60 years old in 1968 and only 24 in 1932»
«Your right, but it wasn’t all that much water this time. We just watched the river from our window of curiosity, not fair. And as you can see, now things are back to normal».

«If you want to learn more about the floods in the area one of my books are touching the topic»

«Some other time, now we got to hit the road before the flood takes even more roads.»
«Don’t worry about the flood boys. You should have seen that river back in -32», Oddvar reminds us as we say goodbye.


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