In case you haven't heard on the national news, parts of Memphis are flooded since the Mississippi River has crested at its highest level since 1937. But the national coverage makes it look like the whole city is underwater! Not so, my vegan friends. Most of the city is not underwater. About 900 homes were expected to flood before the river crested today, but most are in northern parts of the county or on a little river island called Harbor Town. I hope those people are back in their homes soon and the damage is minimal.
I've had a few friends from out of town express concern, but I'm totally fine in my Midtown home — far away from the muddy Mississippi. And most of our tourist attractions — Graceland, Soulsville, Sun Studio, the National Civil Rights Museum — are high and dry. Only Mud Island River Park, which is on an island in the river, is underwater. Most of the city is situated on a bluff, positioned pretty high above the flood stage.
On Mother's Day, my mom, boyfriend, and I flocked downtown with the rest of the "flood tourists" to snap some photos of the rising water. Here are a few of my faves.
Okay, so I know I just said Beale Street wasn't flooded, but there is some flooding at the very end of the street by the river. The bars are up a hill and totally safe. This is a view of the corner of Beale and Riverside, which is near the water's edge. The river has risen up into the street there:
This crazy guy rode his bike right into the water at the foot of Beale and Riverside Drive:
The flooding is washing up snakes and other river critters onto the shore. This cute little water moccasin washed up a few feet from us as we photographed the waves from barge traffic. They're super poisonous, but he kept his distance. And he made his way back into the water as soon as he could:
All that water talk can really make a girl hungry. Thankfully, I have a few of Melody's White Bean Pancakes awaiting me in the fridge for tomorrow's breakfast:
I always make a whole batch of pancakes in one night and heat them up each day for breakfast. Melody's white bean pancakes are so tasty! When she posted them on her blog, I thought, "White beans?! In a pancake?! Weird! I must try it." So I did. The beans are blended with water, vanilla, and sweetener, and then mixed with the whole wheat flour and chickpea flour. You can't really taste the beans, but you can taste the distinct flavor of the chickpea flour, which I adore. They have almost the same consistency as a cornmeal pancake, but not so grainy.
I served my pancakes with a couple slices of my Tempeh Bacon — a recipe in my upcoming vegan Southern cookbook. It's due out in January of 2012, by the way. The publisher has nailed down a month!
Anyway, please try Melody's pancakes! And keep all the Memphis flood victims in your thoughts! They say our waters won't recede for several weeks, so some people may be displaced for awhile.