Monday, April 28, 2014
Moogie Dodges a Bullet, or a Mortar Round
The tornado warning sirens went off last night. Pepper, the dogs (after we convinced Mysti to come out from under the desk in Pepper's office), and I went downstairs to our "safe place" where we remained for a good thirty minutes as the sirens went off and back on. And off and back on. And off and back on. We're pretty sure the cell passed overhead nearby, but we were spared any damage -- we didn't even get any hail(to the relief of the newly planted plants!). The lights also stayed on -- just a couple of flickers. We lucked out.
The good people some 20 minutes from here didn't, including some of our long-time friends from the National Guard. This is near where their new house used to stand, next door to their son's home. Their new brick house. Both houses are now little more than piles of rubble.
Thank God they weren't physically injured. Many Guard friends, including us, offered them a place to stay, but they went to their daughter's. That's probably for the best. The death toll has been revised down to 14 from 16 (because two people were counted twice), but the Governor expects that number to increase.
Weather experts are speculating that the tornado will be classified as at least an EF3. Pretty powerful. It's so very hard to see all this devastation -- the poor town of Vilonia was wiped out yesterday after re-building following an EF2 that hit in 2011. The emotional toll is heavy -- even on those of us who were spared. All we can do to help right now is to donate money to relief agencies -- State Troopers and the Guard are keeping non-residents out of the hardest hit areas to prevent looting and other wrongdoing by scammers who invariably show up to capitalize on disaster. Or to gawk. Been there.
To lighten up a bit, this is a picture that Younger Daughter posted on Facebook after the all clear -- it's Grandbaby #5, and it's captioned, "Baby's first tornado. It's an Arkansas thing."
Sometimes we just need to hang onto a sense of humor. And to train our kids about storm preparation -- #5 has his flashlight and some fruit snacks.
Welcome home to Tornado Alley, Moogie and Pepper, after 14 years in Hurricaneville. I don't think I'd like to be our neighbor if given a choice -- we seem to be storm magnets.