Although I do this, I never release extremely personal information through my posts. This post is no exception, however, it is a topic that is extremely important to me given the recent storms in Oklahoma.
June 9th 2010 was a typical summer day for me, A friend from England was visiting. my kids were being, well, kids, and all was ok in our little corner of the world. Night came, and we all went to bed.
I knew it had been raining this night, I could hear it pinging off of my window. Brief flashes of lightening shone through and the distant rumbling of thunder could be heard. I started to doze off again thinking it must be pretty late or really bloody early. That's when I started to get the feeling that something wasn't right. I didn't hear anything, but in my gut I knew. Something was telling me to look out my window. I pulled it back to see the tree across lit up by the street light. It was swaying back and forth slowly. I squinted still half asleep to watch the tree suddenly and violently begin to whip back and forth. I jumped out of bed and ran into the hall where my mother also woken by the wind burst was standing. We both flung my kids door open and grabbed them to head into the basement.
By this time, the wind had already settled down and we all went back to bed. After all, we've had high winds before, and since the house was still standing and we were tired why not sleep?? I happened to look at the clock before shutting my door. For crying out loud, it's 3 AM.
As I was slowly starting to drift off to sleep again, there was a loud banging on our door. We opened to find a neighbour dressed in pajama's and slippers standing there with a flashlight. Squinting again I noticed it seemed unusually dark. The neighbour asked if we were all ok, and sort of laughing I replied "of course, why wouldn't we be?". The neighbour looked at me confused, "Don't you know?" they asked. This is when my focus decided to kick in. Again I realised that it seemed unusually dark. I was looking for that street lamp that lit up the whomping willow and discovered it wasn't there! I stepped out and looked around. Our street only lit by people wandering with flashlights. Oh My God! Trees were littering the road. No, not branches, but fully mature trees! This is when I realised we had been hit by a tornado.
I was later told they think the storm was an F2, although storm chasers that came through felt that the damage more indicated an F3. Either way, it in no way compares to the destruction in Oklahama. I now have a better understanding as to how they feel. For years to come there will be fear. Every time the rain falls, the lightening strikes, the thunder rolls and the wind picks up they will be afraid. This is what we all face in the wake of destruction.