Quick Don, Come Here & Look!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

"It's bending! OMG!! Do something!!"

Yes, that's what I seriously yelled when I saw this tree split. Last night, we took Mari Jul to swim lessons. I think we were all pretty exhausted, but we all loaded up anyway and headed out to the aquatic center. Mari stared hesitantly at the water and went from calm, melancholy baby to pissed-off-why-on-Earth-are-you-torturing-me-like-this-Mommy baby. *sigh* Yeah, the water was cooler than I would've liked, so I know she really hated it. I couldn't warm her fast enough. I'm certain Mari knows how to pray, because no sooner were we in the water than we heard the loud sirens.

We filed out of the pool and sought shelter by the showers, which were totally enclosed in thick cinder blocks. It was quiet and became even more eerie when all of the kids started singing to calm their fears. We had no cell phone to call our friends and family to let them know we were ok. Less than 10 minutes later they called us out and cancelled class. They assured us that we had 20 minutes before the storm would hit. All of the parents filed out towards their mini vans, SUVs, and compact cars. We headed home while the dark gray clouds crept towards us, taunting us with a violent dance.

Before we got home, I told Don that I needed to run over to Michaels to get something right quick. He shot me an are you kidding me look and firmly said, "No." Now Don is never one to forbid me from doing anything. He's usually laid back about my crazy ideas, but when he does voice an opinion, I tend to listen to it, even if I don't agree. I shrugged it off, muttering something to myself when he pointed to the sky. There were 20 shades of gray staring right at me and all of a sudden I thought the world was going to be swallowed by a sea of black and white with all sorts of shades of gray. Our freshly mowed lawn POPPED cheery green and our trees in the front yard defiantly stood firm, aware of the battle to come. I hurried inside, grabbed some water to put in our safe room aka hall bathroom. I started lighting candles and grabbed my phone. I had missed calls and texts from San Diego, California to Rochester, NY and every place in between. (Thanks friends & family for being concerned, because clearly I was unaware!)

My MIL had the news on and I saw that giant splotch of red moving across the screen. WOWZERS! Meanwhile, Don and MIL were pulling things in from the outside and working away. I stood there, mouth agape, dialing my sister. She was out of power. I told her to keep me posted. Called up Primo. They were without power too. And then I heard it. The faint whhhiiiirrrrrrrrrr. I threw a look to my MIL and asked, was that the siren? No, I don't think so. So I ran to our dining room to look out of the window. (Yes, in hindsight, it probably wasn't the smartest idea I've had.) I saw a tiny gaggle of teenage boys wearing oversized jerseys doing their very best to stay upright and jog away. Leaves blew by, then tiny branches, I seriously expected to see a llama from the nearby farm to fly by, then I heard the loud WHHHHHHHHIIIIIIIRRRRRRRRRRR and I looked up at our trees. Stay put guys, c'mon, you can do it! And did they. They just kept pushing back, almost like they were having fun dancing with the 70+ mph winds. Across the street, though, was a different story. My neighbors tree was flapping back and forth. Both of them, actually. That's when I yelled, "Don! Quick, come here and look. The tree (pointing), the tree, it's bending! OMG...Do Something!" *Like really?? I'm a rational person, but clearly I wasn't thinking straight.* Don is quite amazing at many things. Fixing things and preventing things from breaking are among his strengths. Speaking of strength, he's pretty strong too. BUT he is not capable of stopping a tree from toppling over or splitting in half. At that very moment, though, I believed he could. I shot him a look of desperation and dialed the neighbor. No answer. I called the house line and they answered. I told them of the tree and she told me they were in their safe place. The concern in her voice wondered why I was in the window watching, when a loud CRACK thwacked above us and I saw two neon dazzling arcs electrically painting the street. The energy zapped and all was dark except the incandescent glow from the living area. Mari screamed because her three adults were irresponsibly staring through the windows like we were watching a full feature film. Our baby, alone in the room, scared. I hollered at her to reassure her. Don reached her first and she reached out for me. I enveloped her in my arms and buried the rest of her in kisses. It's ok, everything is ok.

I asked Don to pour me a glass of wine because that was certainly enough excitement for the evening. We had reports from our other neighbors and friends in the area of their trees that split, trees falling on their houses, trees falling on cars, fences blowing down, and all sorts of random debris strewn across the lawn. Broken skylights causing flooding houses, roofs destroyed, shingles all about, and some of the cars suffering damages from the wind and flying tree bits. Everyone was ok. No one was injured and that's what mattered most.


Instead of being glued to the weather, we opted to watch Gran Torino with a couple of glasses of vino in hand.

Wow! No really, wow. Clint Eastwood is a badass. Always has been and that's just the way it is. But this movie even further cemented his acting chops. Some of the other secondary characters, not so much. But him, he was fabulous. Yes, at times the movie was a bit slow. But I really enjoyed it. I'd never heard of the Hmong community (shows how sheltered I am). It was a great tale, very well written, and even better executed. There were amazing dialog points, the cinematography was wonderful and I swear I could smell that food they were eating and was hungry for it! It was definitely worth the rental. And when it goes on sale at Blockbuster, I'm definitely buying it on their 3-fer deal.

That's all. I hope you all are safe and have a great Thursday!

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