Sunday, December 27, 2015

Texas Tornadoes

Earthquakes. In California where I grew up, we worried about occasional earthquakes. There were always little tremors - I dare say I kind of got used to a little ground shaking every once in a while. Occasionally though, there were bad ones like the Northridge earthquake in '94. But it was California, and earthquakes happen.

I guess the same can be said for Texas and tornadoes. They happen occasionally. The tornado sirens will go off and we'll take cover in our downstairs closet. It happened about a month or so ago - right in the middle of the night. We woke the kids up and hustled them down the stairs and into the closet. We put them back to bed after the sirens stopped, and then five minutes later they went off again. Back into the closet. At times, the drill seems like a bit of a nuisance... the tornadoes haven't really gotten THAT close to us since we've lived here (the closet was about 30 miles or so a couple of years ago). But tornadoes happen... and they happen here... in Texas. 

Last night's storms were forecast. Weather folks on the news have been warning about them all week. But I don't think anyone expected them to do what they did yesterday. So far, 11 are dead; homes and businesses destroyed. Because tornadoes happen in Texas.

We had plans to attend a hockey game with some friends of ours from out of town. We'd already told Will about the game and he was so excited to go. The first tornado touched down way south of us a little after 5 pm. Just as we were ready to leave a little before 6 when our city's sirens starting going off. Ryan and Will ran to the closet while I tried to corral the cats. It didn't work.


























The sirens went off for a while (20 - 30 minutes on and off it seemed) and the entire time Will kept asking when we were leaving for the game. We finally decided to leave around 6:30. Sure enough, the second we hit the tollway, the sirens started going off again. We kept driving. We made our way to another highway in another city and sure enough, the sirens started going off. We were watching a local news broadcast the entire time and knew there wasn't an actual tornado near us (the closest was about 30-40 miles away) so we made our way to the game. We made it safely, but as we watched the news in our game suite and saw that cars were tossed off a freeway as a tornado churned by (at least 5 people died this way last night), we'll just have to deal with Will's disappointment because we won't do that again.

Please pray for the folks in North Texas. The damage is horrifying. 

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