When you farm on a creek--which is all we've really done til now--when it rains really hard, the creek rises, and maybe it floods. When you farm on a river, though, you're at the mercy of all those smaller rivers and creeks that feed into yours. It doesn't even need to be raining--it could just be a heavy winter's snowmelt a hundred and fifty miles away--and that great big river slowly creeps up and up and up. It doesn't come up fast the way a creek does, but it also doesn't go down fast. At least that's what I'm learning.
The most frustrating part about it, though, is that on the other side of our little lake is our best bottom field, and even now it's several feet above the waterline except in the lowest corners. Another dry day or two and we could plow in there, river-be-damned... except without a ferry, we can't get equipment out there to work it!
As I'm typing we're almost 3 feet above flood stage, which is a fair bit for a river this big. It's up into a couple smaller roads, and some of our neighbors with lower fields than ours now have waterfront homes:
It's stressful to wake up each morning and look out the bedroom window to see if the river's worse or better. It was nearly back to normal 2 days ago, then she started coming back up... I guess it's just part of the joy of waterfront living. At least we don't have hurricanes.