Monday, August 25, 2008
Scamper From The Camper
What's next? Locusts?
Today Tropical Storm (or remnants of) Fay -- she of the recent Florida flooding and 3 landfalls -- made her way to Alabama just in time to knock us around a bit. We had just come in from Atlanta on Sunday and had not even set our bags down when the tornado siren went off. John and I looked at each other and he turned on the Weather Channel. Bad weather to the north of us was drenching towns 35 miles away. We went ahead and set our bags down.
This morning at 9-something the sirens went off again and the alerts informed us that a funnel cloud (I almost wrote "funnel cake" - wishful thinking. Oh, to have one of those flung at me on a summer day) was spotted to the south of us and heading our way, to arrive, the alert said " at 9:55 a.m." This gave us 18 minutes to get ourselves and the dogs to safety. John threw the dogs and the leashes in the back of the Jeep, I grabbed my engagement rings, my make-up bag, my computer, my contact lenses and John's favourite pair of shorts and ran for the car. We'll talk about my priorities later. Just suffice it to say when you are trying to get out of the way of a tornado you really distill your needs and wants pretty quickly and apparently I wanted to look halfway decent when I was on the local news talking about the drama of running from a funnel cake...er, cloud. Apparently I also felt that John could stand next to me on TV and tell the heartwarming tale of how I saved his shorts.
We drove 3 miles down the road to Petsmart, reasoning of course that Petsmart is made of brick and mortar, unlike our RV, and allows pets inside, unlike, say, McDonalds, which is where we felt like going because we were hungry. We arrived at Petsmart a few minutes before the Weather Channel told us the tornado would. There was little wind and just a light rain. I fired up the computer in the car and checked weather.com, which told us that the tornado had dissipated before reaching our area and in 5 minutes the alert would expire. We sighed with relief, went grocery shopping, bought some take-out sushi and went home. Ah,the comforts of home. But don't sit down boys and girls. We're here just in time for another alert! This one was for "severe thunderstorms that are capable of producing tornadoes". We sat and munched our sushi, staring at the TV and wondering if we were going to have to make a run for the safety of Petsmart again. I didn't unpack my priorities, just in case. Eventually in the next half hour the weather went from worse to bad and we settled in for a nice rainy day indoors. The dogs snoozed and John and I made plans for Labor Day at the beach. He watched "The X Files" while I chatted with friends online.
Later I hear John's voice from the back of the RV : "There's another alert. This one is for flash flooding in our area."
"Great." I said, "This is getting biblical."
We decided to have a sandwich.