The Misadventures of Cheri

Mortifying my kids one swimsuit at a time

Holy Tornado Thursday, Batman

on August 3, 2008

1/1/0/08

Yes, you heard me right – tornado. We had a tornado touch down in our city today. It originally hit about 3 miles from our house and then hit down again about two miles away. What the heck? In Vancouver, Washington?? In the WINTER? Yep, pretty bizarre and random. I don’t even think our neighborhood got as much as a stiff breeze. We were gone, but when we got home (since today is garbage day) the empty garbage cans on the street were still standing up. Thankfully, there have been no reports of any injuries. A lot of damage, but I don’t think anyone’s home was completely destroyed. The only thing that was obliterated was a rowing club on Vancouver Lake. Thankfully, it’s geared towards school aged kids and since it hit at 12:20 p.m., they were all in school.

We weren’t home when it hit, but we were on the outskirts of the storm. I heard it – it was like continual thunder and I could hear it over the radio in my car. I just thought it was regular thunder. We were buying Amber new swimming goggles and on the way there it started to rain. Not just rain, I’m talking scary rain. The kind you see in the movies. I got drenched and I was out in the rain for probably a grand total of less than 30 seconds.

As we were leaving the goggle place, I heard one of the Emergency Weather System alerts on the radio. It said we were under a tornado watch and one had hit in the area of town we live in, but was headed to the north (where we were) and out east. As we were driving to our destination, we could see the tornado almost the whole way. Then we watched it dissipate. The kids got a science lesson to be sure! Austin is very excited that he got to see a real, live tornado. Let’s just say I was glad it was moving away from us. It was huge – not like the funnel cloud things you see on t.v. shows or the movies. HUGE! And we could see it sucking in all the clouds around it. It was one of those times I wished I had a camera in my phone.

I did wonder more than once what kind of idiot I was for driving around in such conditions. Well, I was one of about 50,000 idiots on the road, by my calculations, so I wasn’t too hard on myself. As I listened to the radio I realized it was losing momentum and strength. Plus, we had swimming we had to do!

Okay, I didn’t swim. Chlorine and my skin do not agree. I can do it occasionally, but I can’t make a habit out of it. Anyway, we joined a gym yesterday. It’s owned by the city so we get a very nice discount since Tyler is a city employee. It’s more of a community center with a killer swimming pool and workout gym. And since the world headquarters of Nautilus is just down the road, it has all of their best equipment. The center is only a couple of years old at most and is just phenomenal. Every weekday they have a homeschool swim. And since my kids are old enough, I don’t have to be in the pool with them. I just have to be in the building. So I worked my rear end off. I spent so much time on the elliptical that I’m worried I might not be able to walk in the morning. I feel great right now but who knows what the morning might hold. I also worked on the ab and back machines. Owie!

It was kind of surreal being in a gym and watching live tornado destruction on t.v., knowing that it hit very close to your home. But none of the shots from the air looked like my neighborhood, so the kids and I stayed there for two hours. All the way home I was thinking, “Geeze, I hope I didn’t make a really dumb decision to stay!” I didn’t – like I said before, I don’t think we even got a stiff breeze.

I just looked at the time and I’ve got to get dinner going! Have a good night.

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