Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Mother Nature Calling

I grew up in a small Delta town in Mississippi. Clarksdale, in it's prime, was an awesome place to live. Everyone knew each other, and you had small-town shopping, plus farming and hunting. My parents were raised there, and I lived there until my 9th grade year of high school.

On our street, the neighbors were close. I spent most of my time outside playing and be-bopping around to everybody's homes. Our next door neighbors were hilarious. Everyone knew Hal Hubbard. He was tall, loud, funny, and would snap you in an instant if you were doing something wrong. We actually had somewhat of a domestic dispute in a rental house down the street from us. He marched down there, stood in the middle, and took control. When the woman yelled, "Call the law!", Hal yelled, "I am the law, woman!" A silence fell over the neighborhood, and we never had trouble from them again. Well, Hal was afraid of storms. He always said he could control just about everything, but he couldn't control mother nature. I can remember one time, specifically, when we had a tornado pretty much go over our house. My mom, who was not afraid of these things, went outside to watch. I can remember Hal screaming and calling out to God, because he saw a tree swirling. I'll never forget feeling so small when a man who was so "big" and called himself the law was afraid of a storm.

Yesterday, my prediction of spending much time in the basement was correct. We put Jack and Anabelle downstairs around 7:00. They watched TV on the couch until Anabelle fell asleep. We were still under a watch, so there was no need to panic. Russell was upstairs in his crib. Jack tends to wander aimlessly until someone pretty much forces him to go to bed. I managed to convince him to snuggle with me on the couch in the living room until he was out. Well, so was I. I woke up to tornado sirens and an eery atmosphere. I yelled down to Josh (who I am convinced was sleeping on the couch downstairs with Anabelle) and told him we needed to get everyone down. I woke Russell up (who at this point thought it was morning and was trying to play), gave him a bottle, and stuck him in the pack-n-play in Josh's office downstairs. Jack and Anabelle were moved to the floor in the corner of the basement. Our stinky, blind basset hound was down AND I managed to get Puddles down as well. At this point, we had about 30 minutes before it was expected to go over us. What did I forget? ...to put on my tennis shoes!! After being stranded on the interstate in the snow with nothing but flats and no socks, you would think I would have learned my lesson. In fact, my brother sent me a text to make sure I had shoes:)

Knowing you are in the path of a tornado is scary, but at the moment they say your subdivision and hang their head because it is a densely populated area, fear takes on a whole new level. I actually thought of Hal at this point standing on his back porch. Some things you can't control, and you end up being a sitting duck. We were fortunate that the 2 tornadoes went over us and just North of us. When they came to the town I teach in, they just sort of stopped. I was so concerned, because a good bit of my students live in apartments. I finally went to bed at the end of this at 1:00. My alarm went off at 5:45 to start Tuesday and guess what?? Round 2 starting at 2:00 this afternoon.

I am exhausted, but glad that I had a house to wake up in, a car to drive in, and clothes to put on. I treated myself to a drive thru breakfast, and I am powering through the day. I have been giggling a little at the things I brought down last night. The cat's carrier- like she was getting in there. Formula- in the event that everything was blown away, I was conviced I could hold on to the new tub of formula we had bought. Diapers- I mean, I should have grabbed my folder of "important papers," like our birth certifictes, social security cards, car title, deed. But no, I chose diapers and formula.

I am hoping we will let out early so I can go back to the comforts of my basement. We have always lived in a house with a basement, which makes me feel better about bad storms. I am hoping today is not a repeat, and everyone stays safe.
Sleeping in the Basement Floor (Gran's Quilt is our comfort blanket:)

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