Monday, August 22, 2011

Well, the house didn't get blown down this weekend.

Got away with it just a little longer.

Maybe I'm a pessimist, but I have this thing where I figure I'm not so special that only good things will happen to me.  Why wouldn't a tornado rip through the farm?  It's happened not far from here.  To perfectly decent people.  It could happen.  Lots of awful things happen to nice people and it could all get inflicted on me too.

Yesterday a tornado hit the town of Goderich Ontario, a beautiful little town on the shore of Lake Huron.  I love that whole area and have wished at times that my Mennonite ancestors had put down their incredibly strong tough roots there instead of Amish-Mennonite Central here.  Not that I don't like the area I grew up in.  I love it.  Beautiful farm country.  It's just that it's also beautiful farm country out there, plus BEACH.  Also, real estate prices are waaaay lower.

So basically I have a real appreciation for that area and felt a little sick when I heard on the news that Goderich's gorgeous town square has been reduced to rubble.  Giant trees, stripped, gracious Victorian buildings shattered.  Over twenty injuries and one death.  People left homeless or worse.  I fear that shocked and frightened state.

I feel really awful for the people whose lives have just been changed by that twister.

The sky clouded over in the afternoon, and those of us who were at home on the farm here started looking out the windows anxiously when the wind picked up.  When I say that, I mean, ME, I was looking out the windows, and by wind I mean so strong the willow trees were bent over.   We opened windows to let the air pass through.  Houses implode when they're shut up tight against that violent wind.  Although I have a feeling a tornado doesn't care whose windows are open.  I was looking for sickly green in the sky, things blowing through the air that shouldn't be there.  My kids told me I was paranoid.  It occurred to me that really I was just dreading going into the cellar for shelter, because the cellar is damp and icky and really unpleasant.  Plus Jethro can't stand up straight in there, the ceilings are so low.

We got lucky (again) and didn't have to run down to the cellar to save our lives.

I figured we were safe once the rain started lashing down.  Relief.  The horses had been out grazing like nothing weird was going on... that alone sort of made me feel like we'd be okay.  Maybe I'm all wrong about this but I figure if they are acting weird then we're in big trouble.

By evening the air was all cooled off and you'd never know a storm had just whipped through.

Another weekend without being taken out by a natural disaster.  Yay.


jules said...

Yay indeed! Glad all are safe.

Sydney said...

Drove through there the other day before it had stormed. Sad to see so many old buildings there got destroyed. I guess history can be undone when your in CANsas. We have got a few bad ones here Southern Ontario way in the past few years. Not that our tornadoes can be called bad here because no one usually dies just roofs get torn off.

Paul Tee said...

know what you're talking about. Seeing a dark brooding sky approaching on the weather side, the air hot and humid loaded with repressed energy, the sky a restless swirl of clouds, and a few hanging tails that look ready to drop to the ground. I look for rotation in the sky, or the very least, contrary winds above and below heading in opposite directions. And a sudden drop of temperature as cooler upper air spills down to the ground. And backlit by an sickly iridescent green. In my memory it happened ONCE in my neighborhood on a large scale. There may be hail, too, the harbinger of the approaching storm front. At the very least, I get nervous and turn on the lights, and head for the basement if the power cuts out, confirming that the grid had been cut by SOMETHING near me...

Then I tell myself, "Cut it out," imagine multiple twisters on the horizon, as is more likely in Tornado Alley. I don't know how they deal with the "Finger of God" tracing a line across their territory. More properly should be called the "Finger of the Devil," spreading arbitrary hurt and destruction.

Still, I watch the sky to the west, and worry. I, too, open doors and windows so that the house doesn't blow up when the low pressure passes over.

jules said...

Ok guys, I googled "will tornados really blow your windows out?" and every one of them says opening your windows doesn't really help and you shouldn't waste time doing that and get thee to the shelter. Try it. It's old advice and not really true.