The official tornado drill week sponsored by safety agencies across the country may have been in March, but the real test was the week of tornadoes that began about one week ago. Tornadoes, hurricane-force winds and hail anywhere from golf ball to softball sized, hit many areas.
If you didn't get hit, consider yourself lucky. All I've had to do is pick up a few limbs and small branches. We had a close call with a tornado warning and tornado-capable clouds directly at our location, but they never materialized.
The warning came out and I was home with my 15-year old daughter, my 91-year old dad, and my 21-year old daughter's boyfriend. The 21-year old has so much stacked on top of the crawl space hatch that we elected not to move it. Now, however, that is going to change so next time we can be ready.
So the boyfriend was supposed to be in the bathroom at one end of the house- at least I told him to do that. My younger daughter Kayla and I headed for a tiny bathroom near the family room. My dad has trouble walking,. We offered to move him to what we thought would be a safer place.
"No, I'll ride it out right here," the 91-year old said. "I've lived a long life- if God wants me, he can have me now. If he doesn't, I'll still be here."
Still, I gave him a comforter to protect his face. Once in the bathroom, Kayla and I heard this sound. "Tom, should I have my feet up or down in the recliner?"
"Somehow, I don't think it's going to matter," I replied.
Then my daughter heard the garage door open. What in the world?
It turned out it was the 21-year-old's boyfriend bringing a snack in from the garage.
"Hey, I said get in the bathroom now," I said, trying to stay calm.
"Oh, you mean now get in the bathroom."
"Yes, it's here, Go there right now please!"
He complied, and I returned to the bathroom and young Kayla. She was still laughing about the boyfriend.
Fortunately, the incident ended well for us. The rotation stopped in the clouds, and while it rained hard, we were OK with virtually no damage.
Others weren't so lucky. Our heart goes out to those who lost property - crops or worse.