Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Big Wind

May 24, 2011 is when the Big Wind came through Newcastle, OK...Let's back up a few hours.  The Renegades arrived about 10am for sew day at my house.  V was talking about how she had packed all her important things in just in case she had to go to the cellar.  She said they were predicting bad weather with "Super Cells" beginning at 3pm.  We had a good sew and lunch and the girls gathered their things and left at 3pm (before the Super Cells arrived).  I finished my top and pressed it when my DH came in and said "Let's go get the car".  I left the quilt top draped over the ironing board and off we went to Norman.   The car had been in the shop for 11 days due to a shimmy in the steering wheel.  I put Mom in her room with all the things she needed until we got back.  DH had picked up our daughter's pups earlier in the afternoon so they would not be home alone when the storms came.  When we got back with the car, I put it in the garage and DH put the truck in the garage also.  When daughter arrived we watched the weather and decided we better eat a bite and gather things in case we needed to go to the "Hidie Hole" (our bedroom closet).  I told daughter she either needed to go home now or prepare to stay with us.  She said she really did not have any place to go at her house if the storms did come and she would just stay with us.  I said to her "you should put your car in the barn so it won't get any hail damage", so we did.  Just about the time we got back in the house DH said that we were going to the community shelter and I told him to take Mom to the shelter and daughter and I would go to the cellar across the street and take the dogs with us.  When we got there, there were two people outside and three people and 4 dogs inside the cellar.  Add daughter, myself and our 5 dogs to the mix.  Within 5 minutes 2 more neighbors arrive and finally the 2 that were outside came in and closed the door.  9 people and 9 dogs all together in a very tiny closed in space with no air movement and no room to wiggle.  The dogs were extremely well behaved.  We did not have long to wait until the rain came and the hail began to fall,  it sounded like the hail was about the size of softballs.  Then all of a sudden it got really cool in the cellar and the pressure change was such that my ears were popping much like being in an airplane.  The noise was quite loud and the there was a big bang on the cellar door, then as soon as it came it was gone.  We sat very still and quiet for a bit then decided that it was over.  One man attempted to open the door, but it was not to be and was soon joined by another man to help, but still it was not to be, we were trapped in this very hot, tiny, underground space with no air movement what so ever.  It seemed like hours, but I am sure it was only about 5 to 10 minutes when a neighbor came to the vent to see if we were ok.  We told him yes, but the door was jammed and we could not get out.  He said the back wall of the house was on the door and he would get help to get it off, to not go anywhere that he would be right back.  One neighbor asked about her house and he said it was fine, I asked about mine and he said it too was fine, but the house where the cellar was was gone.  I am guessing that it was about 45 minutes before there were enough folks to get the wall off the door so we could get out.  At last we were out of the very hot, tiny, underground space with no air movement into the fresh air that was cool, at least for a moment.  As we walked out, it looked like a war zone, but I am thinking that my house is fine cause the man said so...not so much.  Half of the barn is demolished, I walk toward my back door and hear a hissing sound and smell gas, so I turn around thinking that at any moment my house is going to blow up.  I meet up with daughter in the street along with the 5 dogs and 2 that are running loose only to see trees, limbs, fence, and debris all over the place.  I see my kitchen window curtains flapping in the breeze and my garage roof and door crashed in on my new car that we just got out of the shop less than 2 hours ago.  Daughter's car and our Tahoe are in the barn, the half that is no longer there, and both are smushed really bad, but there is no hail damage on either.  I begin to walk toward the community shelter where DH and Mom are when I meet them driving down the street.  I tell them what I have seen and that there is no way he can drive down the street because of the trees that he should turn around and try another street and come in the other way.  Cell phones would work at times and not at other times.  We decided that Mom and I would go to my brother's house to stay the night and DH stayed at the house.  We gave daughter the little truck to drive and the guys managed to get our car out of the garage, and to my surprise, it had very little damage to it. We gathered a few things to stay the night and off we went.  I felt like a burglar breaking into my brothers house even though I had a key.  I had to turn the water on because brother had turned it off before they left for their trip.  Here I am with the water meter key and a flash light out in the front yard looking for the water meter.  After about 15 minutes of this, I finally gave up and called him in Colorado for directions to the meter.  Finally we had water, but my arms were not long enough to reach around the big water heater to turn it on so we could have hot water, so we did without that.  Mom did not have any problem sleeping, but I did not sleep well at all.  More later about the clean-up.

1 comment:

  1. It is sad to see your place in that condition and know we left just before that. It makes me cry to see it like that, but knowing that God looked after you makes tears of thankfulness. It's going to be a little rough for awhile,but you have a Guardian Angel watching over you. You are in my prayers.