On Telephone Road the great divide is ground clearance. The people getting off their neighborhood-turned-island have it. James Brown and his wife Adrienne Carter do not.
“My Lincoln sits low to the ground,” says Brown, as he watches a steady stream of four-wheel-drive pickups and SUVs get back on the road.
As the water recedes, both Brown and Carter are anxious to get back to their jobs, but ground clearance – and the two feet of water remaining on Telephone Road – kept them anchored Thursday to their Southeast Houston neighborhood.
Then ground clearance came to them.
“Want some chicken ma’am?,” shouts refinery worker Steven Clark as he serves fried chicken and sides to Telephone Road’s island people from the bed of his Ford pickup.
“I don’t even know this man,” says Brown, chicken in hand. “It’s my first time ever seeing him.”
Clark’s friend Shantel Rayford serves biscuits. “This comes from my heart,” she says.
Tears streaming down her cheek, Freeda Carter ponders the gift that rolled down her flooded street.
“Thank God there’s some angels around, thank God for that,” she says.
Nearby, a lost dog, still wearing its leash, dined on discarded chicken bones.
“All God’s creatures need to eat,” says Darryl Cooper as he finishes his own chicken leg.
Then Clark joins hands with his newly fed friends and prays. ‘We lift these people up Lord,” he says. “We lift Houston up.”
Turns out Clark had the both the heart and the ground clearance, as hope answered the call on Telephone Road.