Thursday, October 18, 2007

Storm Hits Madison Avenue!

Wow! I was just complaining to my husband that this year's tornado season was "boring." We didn't have any really dangerous storms. May sound stupid, but if you've grown up in Oklahoma you kind of miss the calm and pink skies before a tornadic storm hits. There's something very powerful about it. At any rate, I complained too soon!

Yesterday a really bad "severe storm" hit our area of Tulsa. And from what I can tell our little neighborhood got the worst of it! The skies darkened so quickly. My office is upstairs and I sit facing the window. The trees started really swirling around. The winds picked up speed, then picked up spead again. I'm telling you, the trees were blowing circular, not straight!

I called Eric to see if it was storming at his work (other side of town) and to tell him what a whopper we were having at our house. About that time it got a bit too scary for me--felt like I needed to get downstairs to make sure there wasn't a tornado. I turned on the weather to see it was "just" a severe storm with "rotation." I continued to describe everything to Eric when I all of the sudden I just had this feeling like our windows could really and truly blow in on Bright and I (Taevy and Samren were at Grandma's house). I told Eric, "Gotta go!" and hung up on him. Winds had to have been close to 100 mph.

I grabbed Bright and we (along with our big scaredy cat dog) jumped into the closet under the stairs. But no sirens. So after a minute or two I got us out of there and just sat in a small corner of our hall where no windows could blow in on us--Bright and the dog both sitting on my lap!

After a few minutes everything calmed down just as quickly as it had all come up. Blue skies started peaking through. "Whew!", I thought. It was time for me to pick up Eric from work. I opened the door to find that our front yard was a mess. I had no idea! It was like a tree vomitted all over the yard. And in fact, a humongous "branch" from our neighbor's yard was blown off and flew about 30 feet over to our yard, narrowly missing our fence and house. Everybody was coming out of their houses to check out the damage and several folks came to OUR yard to take pictures! LOL! We had it worse than most.

The power went out during the storm and were were told it would be back on around 6pm. No biggie. At around six the power came on for a few seconds before we all heard three very odd sounding "electric" booms. I wasn't outside at the time, but Eric and the neighbors witnessed a huge fireball coming from the transformer! Needless to power last night. But we're back up and running now thanks to the all night work of our PSO workers.

We were *so* blessed by our neighbors after the storm. Within a few minutes our neighbor from down the street came to our house to ask if he could chop up the branch with his chain saw. He knows Eric's condition. It's so humbling to accept help like that from strangers, ya know? I mean, I didn't even remeber the guy's name. I told him that I'm sure Eric would love him to help with it (as in, Eric will get in there and chop too). Then I left to pick him up from work.

When we got home our neighbor and his son were walking up with the chain saw to do the work--wouldn't take no for an answer and wouldn't take a dime for the work. For the next 2.5 hours our neighbor and his son (with Eric helping with lighter work--not supposed to lift more than 20 pounds) worked and worked and worked to chop up the branch. We have a big pile of firewood now (that we gave to our neighbor) and a huge pile of brush to be hauled away. During those 2 hours several neighbors came up to see if they could help with anything. One filled a trashcan with little brush. Another asked if she could go to get us dinner. What a blessing.

Another "plus" of the storm was that our two big trees in the front are pecan trees. We pick pecans from the ground every autumn, crack them, and use them for all of our fall/winter baking (saves tons of money because they are expensive to buy). Anyway, I just told Eric last week I wish we had something that would just SHAKE the trees to get all of the pecans out (they have machines for this at pecan orchards). Well, a good severe storm "shakes" the trees pretty good! I spent the entire evening picking pecans from the ground--around 3000 of them! And I didn't even get half of them up yet! Needless to say, our chopping neighbor is going to get a bag of our best, along with some fresh baked cookies, and we should have enough to give to family and friends as well. Bumper crop! LOL!

I'll post pictures in another post--easier that way. Gotta say--I love Oklahoma! ;-)



Momto13 6:28 PM  

Thank goodness everyone is OK. That is funny about the pecans! LOL I love the pictures. What a memory!

jennine 10:44 PM  

Wow! What a storm. I enjoyed hearing how everyone chipped in to help out. It is so hearwarming.