Wednesday, March 23, 2011

NOW it's officially spring

We had our first round of severe spring weather last night - hail, high wind, lightning, tornado warnings, all that good stuff.

I thought it was very exciting.

Jamie had a mid-level meltdown.

Phoenix and the Farmer slept through it.

I watched the 9 p.m. news and could see the big red blob on radar headed straight for us. This is always good for an adrenaline surge. This is bad when it's dark out and there may be things lurking in the big red blob that you can't see.

Since this was the first severe weather outbreak of the season and several tornadoes had already touched down near Des Moines, the TV meteorologist was clearly having a moment of rapture. I love those guys. (A few years ago we had the most awesome local TV meteorologist. He called himself Captain Tornado. He also got fired for problems with drinking, which may have explained some of his crazier on-screen antics.)

At that point, Jamie was sound asleep on his sheepskin pad by the bed. I know his hearing has decreased and I was happy that maybe this year's severe weather season wouldn't be as traumatic for him if he couldn't hear the thunder.

There weren't any warnings out for Iowa County, which was sort of disappointing, so I turned the TV off and went to bed. About 2 minutes after I fell asleep, my weather radio went off, blasting out a severe thunderstorm warning for Iowa County.

Lightning was flashing, thunder was shaking the house and Jamie was stuck to my leg like a big furry trembling appendage. So much for being deaf.

We stood and watched the storm out the dining room window for awhile. Pea-sized hail was bouncing off the patio like insane little popcorn kernels. The ground was white in no time. I'd hate to be caught in a hail storm where the stones are bigger. These tiny little ones still sounded like someone was firing marbles out of a shotgun at the house.

The storm passed within 20 minutes. Jamie was still sure doom and destruction were pending. I stuck him in Phoenix's big crate in the bedroom and he settled. He's weird that way. Left to his own devices, he'll pace, pant, tremble and try to climb on your head. Put him in a crate and he gets over it.

This afternoon I'm going to take storm spotter training again, to re-certify my spotter status with the National Weather Service. Really looking forward to it, since the first time I took the training, they threw so much stuff at us it was a little overwhelming. It's the sort of knowledge that is cool to have but at the same time, it's the sort of thing I hope I never have to use.


  1. Maybe they will "reinforce" the need to be in your "safe place" when sirens/weather radios are going off. Poor Jamie. Hoping that was the first and last of the season.

  2. I share your love of a good old-fashioned thunderstorm. I'm always happy and excited when we get a Tstorm warning on the radio. Here's to a SAFE but exciting severe weather season!