Friday, June 12, 2009


Yesterday, we had numerous tornadoes touch down in Austin, Texas.

My hubby and I met some old friends for dinner and came home. The weather was just fine. It was cloudy but no rain. I plopped myself in front of the TV and started watching taped episodes of Judge Judy.

In the far distant, I could see some lightning. I hoped it would rain. And then went back to watching Judge Judy.

In about 5 minutes, my son yelled, "Mom! Pause your show and watch the weather news. I got a text message from my friend. A tornado is coming our way."

Frankly, it was hard to believe because it did not look that bad outside. I've seen worse. But I changed the channel and this is what we saw.

Two tornadoes had already touched in Austin. And the storm was heading our way.

We all got into action. The guys scrambled to get the car in garage and cover it up. Hail would soon follow. I did what any normal person would do. Grabbed a flashlight, candles, and my camera. I prayed and prayed that the camera batteries had enough juice.

I took photos of the TV but there was no rain yet. The guys were busy trying to cover up the cars outside the garage. Everyone was shouting.

"Get me a scissor to cut this rope"
"Not that scissor. The other one!"
"Guys! Another tornado touchdown! Debris is falling! It is headed our way!"

Yet there was no rain. Only gloomy silence. Soon we started hearing what sounds like gun shots. Thud. Thud. Thud.

What is odd about tornadoes is that you get this isolated hail even before it starts to rain. That's when you know it is really, really serious.

It was a tornado event.

The guys all got in the house and we huddled around the TV. And it started to rain. And hail. We only got a little hail. But it was very scary.

We don't have a basement. We really don't have a closet that we can all fit into. So we just waited.

It poured and poured. And then it was over. The worst had passed us. We were all safe.

This morning, I will take my camera to work. And take photos of the impact of a tornado event.

One half of a hail.

Big hail


mythopolis said...

Oh wow! That kind of intense weather does make for some real edgy drama, I know. Last year I bought a cheap b/w tv...very small and battery operated in case I lose power in a storm. Its useless now since it is broadcast based and we are going digital. I bought a small (about the size of a Walkman) 7 band shortwave by it is available in outages...I can still get the weather data.

BLOGitse said...

oh no, that must be scary...
good you're all ok!

postcardsfromwildwood said...

Wow, that does sound scary - and I guess the not knowing how bad it will be when it strikes. How often do you get tornadoes? Thank goodness you had already arrived safely home. And better still, had the presence of mind to grab your ... camera????

Steph said...

oh i HATE tornadoes. They are terrifying to me. Glad you are ok.

Craig | fusedreality said...

Whoah! I've never experienced a tornado. Got pretty close last time I was in Florida, but... but... wow.

I'm glad you're ok. :)

mythopolis said...

Photos are really cool...and how cool of you to pick up the cam in such a circumstance That first shot is amazing! It would seriously hur to be outside in that!,

Jodi said...

Oh wow!! That hail is huge! The other ones too. Good Lord! I'm glad you are OK. It must have been so scary! Knowing you though, you must have been scared and thought it was cool at the same time!

I'm glad you are OK my friend.

NicoleB said...

lad it all turned out well!

Ever thought of digging a cellar?

Scriber's Web said...

Mythos: I don't have anything like that. The problem is that even small storms are hyped so much here, that no one pays any attention until it hits us. Every thing is a STORM EVENT!!! And the thing about this storm was that none of the weather forecasters even predicted rain. It just came from nowhere. We are all very well trained in what to do in case of a tornado so it is all ok.

Blogitse: I had my entire family with me so it wasn't scary. The thing is that my boys were going to see a movie at a theater. They changed their minds at the last minute. The tornado hit the theater. Now that would have been super scary. Fortunately, no one got hurt.

Janice: We get a lot of tornado warnings here. The weather men are very dramatic. We are kinda used to it. 90 percent of the time they are false alarms. The problem with tornadoes is that they are unpredictable and hit very very fast. Maybe some day I'll write about my worst tornado experience:)

Steph: So good to hear from you! Hope everything is OK with you. Stay in touch! Tornadoes are no fun!

Craig: Where have you been dude? Great to hear from you! I miss your blog:)

Mythos: I was inside the house with the door open. And the guys were all screaming at me to shut the door! Oh the things I do for you guys! LOL.

Jodi: My friend you are right on the money! Initially I was scared but this wasn't as bad as what I have seen before. So it was too cool:)

Nicole: You can't really dig a cellar in Austin. It is all rocks. Plus if I pay tens of grands to build one, it would be infested with snakes and scorpions. No one has cellars/basement here. It is just not practical:)

NicoleB said...

Oh - ok ;)