Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Thank you

I suppose that you already know that my fair city got hit pretty hard by strong storms last night. Warehouses were destroyed, homes were destroyed, even a mall sustained major damage. My family spent hours glued to the radar pictures on the television, seeing ourselves in the direct path of a tornado for a few minutes (fortunately for us, it veered east, and we were out of its path). Friends of mine saw tornadoes. Friends of mine lost neighbors.

In my house, we had a panicking dog and a panicking boy. My sweet son has a rather irrational fear of weather, particularly hurricanes and tornadoes. Fortunately, we've been able to talk him down from his hurricane fear (it helps that we live very, very far from saltwater), but any serious threat of tornadoes is a guarantee that he'll be at best, fearful, at worst, a complete wreck.

Last night he veered closer to the "complete wreck" side of the scale. There were tears. There was a ten-minute-long episode of such fear that I could barely be near him. He planted himself in the laundry room (the safest room in the house for such events) and assumed the "duck and cover" position. Keep in mind that there was no tornado heading even remotely toward our house at that point. I finally convinced him to watch Hannah Montana in my bedroom, demonstrating that the trek from my bed to my closet (the other, more comfortable "safe room" in the house) took only seconds.

Because a second line of storms was forecast to come through the area around 10 p.m., we dragged the futon mattress downstairs so the kids could sleep in our room. I think it gave him peace of mind, and he slept well (except when the second front came through, with astonishing force).

But the title of this post is "Thank you" and there's a reason.

Some people may think I'm a bit odd, in that my usual online routine includes checking weather.com. I almost always know what the day's weather is predicted to be. And this storm system? Was no surprise. As early as Sunday afternoon, I knew that Tuesday was going to be an interesting day. There was a "Special Weather Statement" posted, warning that conditions would be ripe for such storms. By Monday, the forecast had been narrowed down to the point that the predicted storms were projected to arrive between 1 and 9 p.m.

The first raindrop hit my neighborhood at 4 p.m. Just as predicted. The worst was over before 11 p.m.

Even though I whined (and wined) about missing American Idol and House, our local weather forecasters kept us informed, alerting folks when the funnel clouds began forming, figuring out the path these storms would follow, and telling people to take cover.

They were exactly on target. And for that, I'd like to buy all the weather forecasters a Coke. They all deserve a nice day off.

8 comments:

uumomma said...

I'm glad you all are safe. Sorry you had to watch Hannah Montana, though.

reddirtroad said...

Oh Gosh. So glad you are safe.

Noodle said...

Amen. Channel 3 had my FULL attention from about 4:45 on through the night.

Wendi said...

Not being able to comfort the kids is the worst. I was thinking about you guys all night on Tuesday -

alan said...

You can tell we're related. I almost always have a radar window open on the computer someplace, even if it is minimized. I've even got my wunderground.com account configured to email me nowcasts, forecasts, and weather alerts. I know my weather, dammit.

and while it wasn't as bad is my nephew's seems to be, I was overly scared by heavy weather as a child. Now I love it.

kristabella said...

Glad you guys are OK! I was worried about you!

Rachel said...

I've read your blog a couple of times recently, but I didn't realize you were from Memphis. So am I, and that afternoon/evening was one of the scariest weather situations I can remember!

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