North Bundaberg residents are running on empty.
Physically, they're drained. Emotionally? Even more so.
In the space of a week, they've seen their neighbourhood transform from a quiet community into a raging river and, finally, to a disaster zone akin to something that might come out of Hollywood.
Luxury yachts lay strewn along the banks of the Burnett River, where the relentless flow of water tossed them aside like a child might scatter his toys during a tantrum.
In town, putrid mud coats almost everything in sight.
Stagnant ponds have formed in sunken roads, furniture rests precariously in trees and some homes have disappeared completely.
Council estimates the damage bill to be at least $200 million.
It's not uncommon in the streets of North Bundaberg to see an old woman burst into tears, a grown man shout in frustration or a couple hold each other as they wander aimlessly through rubble.
But somehow, residents have found the strength to start the arduous clean-up.
As soon as the Burnett Bridge, which links the obliterated suburb to the CBD in the south, was completely opened on Sunday morning, a stream of cars began filing over.
Some waiting in the several kilometre-long line just wanted to start getting their homes back in order.
Others will be assessing whether they want to go back at all.
The queue included soldiers, tradesmen and emergency workers, intending to repair infrastructure damage.
Most, however, were people from elsewhere in Bundaberg, thanking their lucky stars they weren't in the same disastrous situation and ready to lend a hand.
More than 700 residents joined a council-organised mud army to take to the streets.
Co-ordinator Glenn Hart describes the volunteers with the only word he thinks is fitting - inspirational.
"The way the volunteers interacted with those affected community members showed the kinship that exists in our community," he says.
And going by the mood of those who lost everything in the flood, they need all the support they can get.
Jordane Buchanan questions how he will tell his autistic four-year-old son what has happened as he sweeps thick sludge out of his front door.
"His teddy bears were stuck inside and that's his life," he says.
"He won't be able to get over it."
Lifelong Bundaberg resident Harry Hartfiel tries to process what he is seeing as he stands in the middle of what used to be a street.
"It's like we're standing in the middle of a third world country," he says.
"I've never seen anything like this."
Dorothy Cox provides yet another harrowing insight into how people are feeling as she picks through sludge in the garden of what was her newly renovated home, muttering: "Nothing matters anymore."
Bundaberg, the worst hit city in Queensland's flood crisis, has been a mecca for politicians who have come to stand in front of cameras with offers of help.
Premier Campbell Newman appointed deputy commissioner Brett Pointing as the region's disaster recovery coordinator, Prime Minister Julia Gillard committed federal funds and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott called for more loans and tax breaks for affected businesses.
But having too many people in charge and trying to help almost backfired last week when a communication breakdown between police and council saw residents told they could return home to north Bundaberg, only to have the offer withdrawn hours later.
Angry, frustrated and tired, residents stood at the entry to the bridge demanding to be allowed over.
"This whole thing is just a joke," Ross Thiele fumed at the time.
"If they weren't ready for us to go over, why even say anything at all?"
Others were heard shouting more colorful words to describe the situation.
But for now, tensions have subsided as people focus on the gargantuan clean-up task ahead.
It could be months before residents can actually move back into their homes. If they are even inhabitable, they are without water, sewerage or power.
In the meantime, they have temporary homes at a makeshift tent city in the showgrounds.
Lisa Marsh says the caravan she shares with her two young children contains everything she owns.
"This is our home now, this is it," she sighs.
"But there's no point complaining, we just have to get on with it."
It's a motto that appears to be working for most Bundaberg residents.