Mamacita says: Halfway through class this afternoon, we heard the city tornado sirens. These sirens go off every Friday at noon, but today isn’t Friday, and 3:30 isn’t noon.
We’d all been watching the weather closely through our tiny classroom window. Spring is prime tornado weather here, and it’s been absolutely pouring down rain all day – raining so hard, we couldn’t even see the cars in the parking lot a few yards from that window, and the rushing water was so loud, we felt as if we were inside a big hollow drum and people were dancing on it.
Suddenly, as if a gigantic spigot had been turned, the rain stopped and the sun blazed brightly. The air grew VERY still and heavy. The contrast between the booming of the thunder and the surf-like sound of the rainstorm, and this silence, was ominous. When you live in southern Indiana, you know what this kind of weather can mean. We waited for the hail.
The building director came in and sent us to an inside windowless classroom. Once there, my students whipped out their cell phones and began calling their children’s schools to find out what was going on there. A few of the children had already boarded their buses and were on the road – those parents became frantic and I told them to go ahead home. The other children were being held in their schools’ bottom floor.
Anyone who lived south of town was held in the building. Those who were going to be driving north were allowed to leave. I stayed, because even though my students aren’t children, they are still my students, and I wasn’t going to leave while any of them were still in the building.
Luckily, the funnel missed us, but the radio did say* that the state park south of town was hit, as were the towns just east and south of here. The rumor mill is forever grinding away, so I don’t know yet how much of that is true, but I guess I’ll know soon enough.
All in all, it was a scary afternoon. I’m glad to get home.
It would be very nice if I have to wait a good long time to be part of another one. Forever, even.
* That’s how my grandmother talked, after her stroke. “Radio did say.” “Your daddy did say.” My Cousin C and I still giggle over her grammar sometimes. And a lot of other things. She’s not just my cousin, you know; she’s also one of my bestest friends.