Saturday, April 14, 2012

Oklahoma City

We had wanted to go to the zoo last weekend but once I remembered that it was Easter and they were having an egg hunt (meaning lots and lots of kids), I decided that Sunday wasn’t the day to go. During the week we worked…that is always exhausting so we always enjoy the peace and quiet of the weekend. Mother Nature didn’t get the memo that those were supposed to be the conditions here this weekend. We were plugging along yesterday afternoon, with a few more stops to make, when we got a text from our friend Susie saying that there was a large storm headed our way. The sky had been darkening rather quickly so we drove back to the rig to assess the situation. The local TV channels were going crazy with tracking of the storms. Linda and I figured out our plan since there had been talk of bad weather this weekend. We had stopped in the office at lunch time and asked them about the siren system. As former PA residents, we don’t have those back in PA. We asked what exactly does it mean when it goes off ? Is there one on the ground within x miles or what. A: It means that one has formed or been spotted in that county. Where is the storm shelter and can we get in there after the office closes. A: It’s between the laundry room and the office and yes, the door will be unlocked after the office closes. Can we bring our dog in there ? A: yes  So we made our plan, knowing that the worst of everything was going to P4130012happen through the night.

So, back to watching the weather on TV…Linda was texting our friend Susie at the University, in Norman, where she is working. The TV station has a chopper in the air, near the storm. As the pilot is talking, he zooms in on the rain wrapped clouds and a funnel cloud appeared out of the clouds and dropped to the ground. Holy crap ! They are so precise out here at predicting the movement of these cells (they get a lot of practice !) Long story short, it touched down in Norman and skipped across an area about five blocks from the University where Susie was working. Bunch of damage….just a few minor injuries. Norman is the town where we were last week. We left the state park there last Friday and moved to Oklahoma City…an hour away. P4130013

Last night we had a 30% chance of any storms hitting the OKC area. We thought it would be a quiet night. It wasn’t….once the storms fired up, it was so noisy most of the night. So much lightening and thunder. We tried to lay down at 8:30, knowing that it was going to be a busy night. Didn’t get much sleep till midnight with all the storms. At 2:30 the siren went off. Even with my ear plugs in, I heard it. I had been concerned that I might not be able to hear it. We jumped up, did what we had pre-arranged to do and headed out the door to the shelter. I had Boomer and ran to the shelter with him. Linda took the car and drove to the shelter. We were one of the first to arrive. A lady met us as we came through the door and said the tornado was in Piedmont and was moving away from us. We had no idea where  that was but when we got back to the rig and looked off in the distance, the sky was going crazy with lightening. Tons of rain over night. The water was running down the street, here in the park.

P4140015 We had a great break today. Susie and Dave Smeal met us at the Warren Theatre, in Moore to take in a movie. We first went to Taco Mayo, just a short distance from the theatre, for a bite to eat. We went to see 21 Jump Street, which was hilarious and the sound and picture image was the best I’ve ever seen (or heard). This is a gorgeous theatre !There is a restaurant and bar on the top floor, for folks over 21 years of age and willing to pay more to go up there. Lots of neat areas, wall murals and gorgeous neon in the art deco style. We loved it and it was nice to see Dave and Susie again before we leave the area. So glad that Bobbie gave us their contact info so we could meet them. Looking forward to meeting up with them out on the road as we criss cross the country.

It was a nice break but we arrived back at the rig to see that the TV stations are already tracking storms in the western part of the state. Very windy here right now. We pulled the slide in so the slide topper doesn’t take a beating.Bracing for more storms tonight. The good news is that there is a Sprint cup race tonight. The bad news is that it’s on FOX and will probably be pre-empted by the weather.   :(

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