The scene in Middleburgh: High spirits and sinkholes

Above: A sinkhole on southbound Rte. 145 in Middleburgh. Photo by Martin Rivas. 

Martin Rivas, a New York City-based singer-songwriter, has been sending us updates about Middleburgh after Irene. (Rivas owns a house in Middleburgh.) Here's his latest report, sent to us on October 4. -- JR

Just got back from some preproduction work for my new album up at my place in Middleburgh, and I chatted with some folks while there... a big concern on Main St. in Middleburgh is what looks like the beginnings of some sort of sinkhole on the southbound side of route 145. I've attached a couple of pics, which look relatively benign, but... I watched one of the super-heavy trucks roll down Main St., and the road actually appeared to wobble as the truck passed over the area. Folks are very concerned. 

Most shops are dry at this point, but two, The Conglomerate and Artisans' Gallery, are still pumping water out of their basements, about a foot or so every morning, and a foot every night. Oddly, the water looks clear that they're pumping, which has folks thinking that there may be a ruptured pipe somewhere underground nearby. It's not the muddy water they were pumping out shortly after the flood. It's a big concern because the bricks in the walls of the basement of the building housing the Conglomerate appear to pretty much be disintegrating at this point. They really, really need help.

In better Middleburgh news, M&J's Cafe on Main St. is re-opened and keeping late hours so folks have a place to eat. Peking Chinese Restaurant on Main St. re-opened today... Mrs. K's Kitchen has their walls framed out and insulated, with bathrooms being replaced in the coming days. Mr's K's spirit is indomitable. Such an inspiration to see her usual big smile with all they're going through... the Middleburgh Hardware Store reports that their espresso bar won't be re-opening. Too much damage to the equipment from the flood.

Drove down 145 south through Livingstonville and Preston Hollow today for the first time since they re-opened the road, and those towns look very badly devastated. Saw hardly anyone out and about, so I couldn't stop to ask questions of anyone about how things are going.