As most of you know already, there was some fairly severe weather in the Dallas/Fort Worth area yesterday including several tornadoes and large hail. Rest assured, The Queen, M&M and I are all in one piece. Castle Erickson weathered the storm with nary a dropped tree branch or lifted roof shingle (as far as I could tell when I finally got home late last night).
The Queen and M&M were not home when the storms arrived and were never in danger. I was at the office about 20 or 30 miles as the crow flies from where the tornadoes were touching down. We had a couple of warnings to go to the center of the building which made for a wholly unproductive day; but, to be truthful, the wind and rain never even got worrisome where we were.
It was interesting to watch the weather radar though. Lots and lots of red extending from around Hamilton (a ways southwest of Fort Worth) all the way up through Wichita Falls. At one point, I watched as the radar showed Castle Erickson situated in an oasis of clear skies surrounded by a sea of red severe weather. That was when all the tornadoes were touching down in Arlington and Lancaster along I-20. The Castle sits roughly midway between Lancaster and Arlington just south of I-20 for those who are interested. Needless to say, I had visions of coming home to no home.
You would think we would have learned by now. For the last several years, the I-20 corridor from Fort Worth to southeast Dallas and into the southeastern suburbs and rural towns has been a magnet for tornado activity. In fact, one of yesterday’s tornadoes touched down within a mile of the former Castle Erickson located just south of I-20 on Hwy. 287. Nothing like seeing the old neighborhood narrowly miss obliteration to make you thankful that you moved. I also have a fond memory of driving home from work to the former castle along I-20 one fine, stormy day to see a funnel cloud forming over my exit. Nice.
I think I’ll be taking this as a sign that the Royal Family needs to seek shelter further north.
While I’m thinking about it, yesterday’s events remind me of story.
Once upon a time when The Queen and I were still dating and yet to be betrothed to one another, we were sitting at the former Castle Erickson (which, at the time, was your humble Shepherd’s bachelor pad/den of iniquity…yeah, right…like that ever happened) whereupon The Lady Who Would Become The Queen announced that she desired that we (meaning us) should go jogging for healthful benefits and general getting out of the house activity. I (he who despises jogging and owns firearms for the sole purpose of avoiding the necessity of running for ones life…ever), hoping to sound as if I were the voice of reason, suggested that the weather was not conducive to jogging seeing as how it was, at that particular time, lightening and thundering overhead.
The Queen accused me of not wanting to get wet. I informed her that such was not the case, and that I merely had no desire to be struck by lightning while engaged in my least favorite activity on the planet (I’d rather argue with the IRS than go jogging). After much strident discussion on the subject, I suggested we travel to a nearby park to see just how lovely the conditions were for pounding one’s feet into oblivion on hard concrete. The strident conversation about my desires or lack thereof continued on the drive over to the park. Once parked in the park’s parking lot, the discussion continued a pace for a good 30 minutes or more (did I mention The Queen is a redhead…it’s a warning sign that really should not be ignored) until God Himself decided to settle the subject once and for all.
As we were in the midst of our discussions having not yet exited the vehicle due to the lightning and thunder and torrential downpour, the winds picked up. That, or someone parked a 747 directly behind my truck as a strong breeze lifted the back of my pickup off the ground probably a foot or so before it fell back to earth with a bounce.
I announced that the discussion was over, and that we were returning to the house. The Queen wisely chose not to contest that state of affairs.
Upon returning to the house, we discovered that downtown Fort Worth had been hit hard by a tornado(es) while other twisters had hopscotched their way down the I-20 corridor leaving destruction and mayhem in their wake. Unbeknownst to us, The Queen and I had been sideswiped by the very edge of a tornado.
Thank you Lord for thinking about us. We’re alive and doing fine. [with apologies to the band Tesla for paraphrasing their cover of the song Signs].