We were scheduled to chaperon Brit’s band to UNO for a band competition. We were a little on edge because the National Weather Service had said we’d have bad weather which could likely lead to tornados. It’s amazing that we can find out what time the weather is going to become really bad. As luck would have it, it would be within the hour after we were due to return to the school to drop the kids off after the concert.
On the way to school from the concert, it was POURING rain. The streets are slightly slanted to dump excess water into the gutters at the side of the road. Our bus driver was driving in that lane. Quietly, I was a little panicked. Ian asked me what was wrong. I said, “We shouldn’t be in this lane. It is full of water….” and then I went on to watching the rain pour down.
Eventually, he decided to change lanes. So much for the anticipated school bus hydroplaning. We did get home safely. Everyone thanked the bus driver for getting us home without incident.
We got food from Burger King by our house and went home to plant ourselves on the couch to watch The Weather Channel. For hours.
All through the afternoon, tornadoes were being spotted over Oklahoma and Kansas. We were waiting for our turn, but hoping not to have one, because really, I am a wimp when it comes to tornadoes. We had a bag packed for our trip to the basement. We had a plan for grabbing Brit, the dogs, the parrot and bringing along some food and water and at least a change of clothes for Brit.
I think we were a bit more vigilant because the weather people have started using stronger, more emotional wording, like, “You could be killed if you don’t get underground immediately!”. This is mostly for people who have become numb to the tornado sirens. I am not one of those people. I am the one checking the Internet to see what is happening and what time I should be underground. Of course, by the time we hear sirens, the answer is, “Right Now.”
We have a new weather radio. We thought it wasn’t working, because it didn’t report the Tornado Watch. Then we heard a really ginormous BEEEEP! and it was warning us of thunderstorms. Good enough, I guess.
Around 10:30, we decided to go to bed. Couldn’t sleep. Warnings going on everywhere and tornados landing all over KS (which borders Nebraska to the South). Not good. Some people didn’t have a siren to warn them. Also did not make for a good sleeping situation.
Around 12:30, I was awakened by BEEEEP!, which was all about a thunderstorm watch. I heard the rain pelting the window. I couldn’t sleep again, so I grabbed my laptop and went to look out the patio window. The lightening was constant. It was an amazing light show, really, with the added symphony of thunder, wind and heavy rain.
This is probably the video of the night, by the way (or the early morning, as the case may be). Watch it carefully. This is what a tornado looks like in the night: http://twitpic.com/99zq54
Around 2:30am, I went back to bed, being reasonably sure there was not going to be a tornado to surprise us in the night. I hadn’t seen much from Jim Cantore on Twitter in awhile, so I decided it was probably alright to go to sleep now. I was comfortable knowing I was not going to wake up to my roof being carried away, like some did.
121 tornados were spotted in OK, KS, NE and IA overnight. At least.