May 01, 2010

Rude Awakening

Imagine being in a sound, drug-assisted sleep, at 12:30 a.m., when you are wrenched awake by the loud, unmistakable sounds of the air sirens.  Good grief!!!  Heart-stopping!  Rolled out of the bed; headed towards the closet where I have a chair waiting.  Thank goodness for the sirens but will somebody tell me why they haven't worked out a system to let you know when it is safe to come out?  I could be in there forever; how do you know when the coast is clear?  Just asking. And while I'm asking--if you live near the railroad tracks and are accustomed to hearing the freight train ("freight train, freight train going so fast"--I couldn't resist), how do you know when it is a tornado?  I don't want to know but the thought ranks among those "Things that make you go hmmmm...".

When they decided that it was major thunderstorms instead of a tornado for my immediate area--cause I'm glued to everything that can give me information (including the weather radio which decided to work)--the thunder and light show, with the attendant rain, was unbelievable. Lightening hit a transformer somewhere and all the lights went out.  When the interior lights came on, the town was pitch black.  No exterior lights anywhere.  No security light; no firehouse; no library; no nothing!  Didn't take long to restore power but very eerie.

Then they predicted, in addition to high winds, flash flooding and Ripley was still in the mix.  Well, that shouldn't bother me.  There's no water near me!  Until I looked out of the window and witnessed a mini-flood rushing towards the bottom of the street and my front yard completely underwater.  Serendipity sits on a slight rise, which makes keeping the slopes mowed and trimmed very difficult.  But was I ever grateful this early a.m.  The folks at the end of the street sit far enough back from the street that, perhaps, they didn't get any of the rushing water.  Hopefully, the storm drains could carry it.  Last summer, I did pass some houses, on Rt. 19, who sat further back and had a deep gully separating their property from the roadway, whose front yards were underwater all the way to the porch!  One thing is for sure and two things for certain, that sheet of  rushing water made me clearly understand the meaning of  "turn around--don't drown"  and the fact that rushing water can move your vehicle. 

Thunder continued to roll through the early morning hours.  I dropped off around 5 a.m., only to awaken to new calls for tornado watches and warnings and SHEETS of rain.  Flooding is happening all around the region.  Memphis escaped the watch and it has been reinstated.  Backed up sewage and flooding has halted intake at the MED, a hospital in the city.  And flooding has blocked the highway leading to Brownsville.  All areas going up 1-40 are under a watch until 4 p.m.  Thank goodness that I'm not near 1-40.  Calling for rain all weekend and folks are being advised not to go out. Looking out of the window, I have no reason to go anywhere.

When looking at this area, from D.C., I saw several properties which would have made a good investment property.  Near one of the lakes or areas where you could turn a penny by renting housing to hunters or fishermen.   With my luck, they would be underwater; flooded out.  The properties on stilts would have torn from their moorings.

So this area is under a tornado watch until the 12th of Never. Be safe everybody and be Blessed.

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