Sunday, July 18, 2010

I'm sticking with thundercyclone


Kansas.  One minute it's all blue skies and 95 degree weather and you're tooling along down the road behind some WTF piece of farm equipment.


Hmmm... think I can drive under it?


You pick up the kids from camp and hey, look at that, that's a pretty ominous looking wall of dark clouds on the horizon.  Stop on the way home to grab a movie and when you walk back outside the rain has just started to fall.  Jump in the car and by the time you're at the far end of the parking lot you decide to pull over and park because, um, it now looks like this:


Shiznit


In fact, the wind is blowing so hard that it's buffeting your parked car and debris is hitting the side of it and the trees are bent over in such a fashion that it brings to mind images of gulf coast hurricanes and you expect at any second to see Anderson Cooper go flying by your windshield clutching a CNN microphone.  And now, oh crap, it's hailing. 

Even though you are secretly thrilled by violent weather, you are beginning to get a bit scared.  But not so scared that you don't have the presence of mind to pick up your phone and make a quick "holy f*ck" status update to your Facebook page.

Your kids are asking why you're not driving, are pointing out other cars that are still on the road, are in fact giving you encouragement ("Come on Mommy, you can do it!") and you in turn are pointing out a gushing river of water now dissecting the shopping center parking lot and decide your children do not have a proper appreciation for their own mortality and wonder if this has something to do with the movies you let them watch.

And then suddenly, as quickly as it started, it is over.

On the short drive home, which is perhaps ten blocks, you pass six trees that have been knocked down by the storm.




You use this as a teaching opportunity to explain to your children (who are not listening) why you don't drive in violent storms (because they are busy looking out the window at all the destruction).

When you get home you check your Facebook page to see that your friend who is a storm chaser has left a comment on your status to the effect of "Wahoo!"  And you write him and ask "What the hell was that?!? Just a really badass storm of did it have some special classification like thundercyclone?"  And he said it was probably a storm with a lot of microbursts.  And you have to google microbursts and it still doesn't make a lot of sense to you so you decide to stick with thundercyclone.

Because hey, as long as you have to live in the wrong country, at least it's somewhere exciting.  And that makes you happy.

mummytime

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50 comments:

  1. Hilarious, scary, riveting.....and did I say hilarious? Love that you updated facebook as what was possibly your last action on earth :)
    I would've tweeted. (not a euphemism)

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  2. @ Cate, it's a new phone, I haven't learned to tweet from it yet! #noob

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  3. Jaysus! You're a brave woman. Reading that scared the bejebus out of moi.

    Happy Monday or Sunday lovely.xx

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  4. I find nothing lovely about "thunderclones" or particularly actual tornadoes (the mere thought scares the piss out of me) but you totally made it sound funny.

    Oh Kansas, I'm not cut out for you...

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  5. They're rather spectacular and I love them. Unless I'm driving in them, in which case they are not at all fun. Just terrifying.

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  6. AWESOME -- if you're inside! Cars feel all solid and secure and safe until you hit a bit of wind and rain -- suddenly you're very aware that you're essentially sitting in a foil and plastic box.
    I LOVE how Facebooked it all as possibly your last actions on Earth, tho!

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  7. We get the odd wild strom here. Had two within days not long ago, one just 5 km from where I live. Great waterspouts that crossed onto land to loacl, but severe devastation. Call me boring, butI can go without that sort of excitement!

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  8. Yes Toni, what does it say about our age? We're all going to shed our mortal coil madly typing our last 140 charachters!

    Watershedd, see now, that just makes me want to move to Oz (even more).

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  9. I'm definitely in the scared of storms category! We get sudden thunderstorms with crazy wind, rain, and hail here too, often with tornado warnings. If my cat is hiding, I round up the kids and head to the basement...she always senses when a storm is coming.

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  10. @ IRL, cats are very smart, which is why I wear cat ears.

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  11. Looks exciting. It's been years since I've seen thunder or lightning (literally) and to be honest, I'm kind of jealous.

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  12. @ Trev, you'll just have to come visit!! :-)

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  13. I just do not think I could live with that type of uncertainty - ie whether you will live or die while trying to get a litre of milk. I like the sexy big-rig truck type thing on the road. You are calm under pressure Lusty and always thinking of the kids education. bravo. What Movie did you get?

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  14. @ Woog, it was kids choice so we came home with Tinkerbelle and Scoobydoo. Who wouldn't be willing to risk life and limb for those gems? Okay everyone, hands down in the back.

    And breathe easy, you would never risk your life here buying a litre of milk, as we sell it by the gallon.

    @ YummyMummy, it was but only for about 20 minutes.

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  15. I love you. It's confirmed. I haven't laughed that hard in a long time. (Plus, you know how much I love storms.)

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  16. @ TTH, Ha, we are the wild women of the storms. And I love you too!

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  17. See if you lived here you'd have Stevie Jacobs (http://today.ninemsn.com.au/meettheteam/172289/steven-jacobs) flying past your windscreen. I'd like to see that.

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  18. A microburst? Isn't that when the belt fails on a miniskirt?

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  19. So, if I ever find myself there in one, I'll just grab you and you can park us in a car park somewhere til it's over?
    Cool :P

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  20. Gosh - it must be really scary to be caught up in those things! I suppose if you are safe & know you are safe, they would be exciting!

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  21. I like Thundercyclone as well. But I must be growing up because now I watch them from the safety of the verandah rather than dancing around outside in the middle of them yahooing away. Yep I am getting old. *sigh*

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  22. I love that not only did you have the presence of mind to fb the storm. You also managed to document it all with images. I particularly love storms! Love your stories too!

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  23. I would give my right arm to see Anderson Cooper fly by my car.
    Best. Day. Ever.

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  24. @ Badger - gay/not gay, it still has good entertainment value.

    @ Kim - I don't dance in thundercyclones either, hard to update Facebook in driving rain.

    @ Rosie - Yes, gone are the days when we (I) just sat still and allowed the magnitude of an experience to sink in...

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  25. @ Steve - brings to mind images of MM over the breezy subway grate!

    @ Ro - come on out! We'll go storm spotting. :-)

    @ jfb57 - an acquired taste perhaps. Or maybe I'm just a bit off. And welcome, nice to see a new face.

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  26. @ Tenille - so since your in the southern hemisphere would Stevie fly by your windshield in the opposite direction?

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  27. WOW! It's amazing what a flash storm can do! I like how you've written it in a diary, present tense form.

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  28. I chuckled at this! Reminds me of when we lived in Iowa. I'll never forget our going away party on the farm (when we were moving to Colorado). Blue skies that day. Then, suddenly that night thunderstorms and tornadoes! We had over 50 people crammed in our basement with a keg and pool table. The air was electric - people were drunk and crazed from the strange weather I think. Then, the lights went out! There were drunk people wandering all over my dark house holding candles and lighters. It was freakin great.

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  29. I must continue (geez! someone shut me up already!) - AND THEN, at the party, the creeks (pronounceds "cricks") by our house flooded and there was no way out on our surrounding country roads! The highways had rivers crossing them from all the rain. People slept all over the place. Late that night (or early in the morning), when the rain stopped, some crazed lunatics (e.g., my husband) carried out a recliner over their heads (from the basement) and put it in the bonfire pit and lit it on fire.

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  30. Eeeeeh, no, thanks, not for me either! That you had the presence of mind to update FB is commendable. I, like CateP, would have tweeted... and that ain't no euphemism.

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  31. what a pace you set. you tell this at breakneck speed, throw in the hilarity of updating your facebook page and talking to your kids who aren't listening, what fun! even the photos had a pace to them. really well told. one of my favorites of yours. you can do light and fun, and you can go deep. versatile.

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  32. I'm with you, I love the thrill of a good storm. I rate a storm on the number of trees it brings down, the length of time the power is out, and the time it takes for the S.E.S to arrive and start chainsawing.
    My theory is that our house has been standing for over 100 years, it's in a safe nook within the bush!
    What a great thing to read on a cold Melbourne winters day!

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  33. @ Kristy - 50 drunks running stumbling around your house in the dark carrying fire? Hello, State Farm? I think your house has better odds of survival from a tornado!

    @ Fun Mum and @ Ed - thank you thank you!

    @ Being Me and @ Nomie - okay, we have one pro storm vote and one con. I'm thinking Nomie poses a slightly better argument though as she throws in some nice detail and non-gratuitous yet effective use of exclamation points.

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  34. Hahaha, Shiznit indeed.

    I too love a good weather event. Except when I'm stuck in the freaking middle of them. Then I just shit my pants and cry like a baby.

    Glad you guys are safe. xx

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  35. You Americans and your crazy naming conventions. what's wrong with "it's pissing down"?

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  36. Wet and wild - just dreary and drizzly here!

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  37. @ Glen - because it was pissing sideways for a while there.

    @ Bern - Exactly!

    @ Magicdarts - I can appreciate drizzly too, at least you don't have to water.

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  38. Awwww, c'mon Kristin- Harden up!!! ;)

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  39. @ Lori - Ha, we had another one last night -- more trees down -- and my husband called me a puss because I wouldn't drive home in it, waited it out. But don't you want me in the gene pool? C'mon, you've seen my kids.

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  40. Kansas storms scare the pants off me. And I love storms. I drove through the state recently on a solo road trip. The weather was beautiful and blue, little puffy clouds in the great expanse of sky. I noticed some dark clouds on the horizon and wondered if they would bring rain. No, they brought a thundercyclone. I had to pull over and wait it out (with just enough presence of mind to record a voice memo during it).

    But the second tundercyclone of the day is what really did me in. I had to keep driving during that one because I was too afraid a slurpy straw funnel was about to drop from the sky and drink me up. No voice memos, status updates or pictures during that one. My love of violent weather took a beating that day.

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  41. @ Jennie - What a magnificent story. Magnificently scary! I imagine you'll be taking the long way back to avoid Kansas. We like to do things in extremes here. Weather, poltiics, balls of twine...

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  42. Oh my my... I would love to have that kinda thunderstorm here... OH God forgive my sins.... Send some good thunderstorms here will ya dude?

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  43. @ Ratz - am friends with God on twitter, will put in the good word for you.

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  44. I love storms. LOVE storms. Driving in them, not so much, but the energy from a good storm, man, it's gorgeous.

    Dammit, I need a good storm.

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  45. Me? I would have been hidden in the southwest corner of the basement like my mother taught me. Oh wait, I live in a TRAILER. Never mind. I just would have been fucked!

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  46. A 'microburst' sounds like my attitude towards housecleaning.

    What an amazing storm - you were right to not drive in it. I was once caught in such a storm with my friend KT along a freeway and people were still speeding along - without their headlights even on. Sheesh!

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  47. Wow! That is amazing. I would have been completely terrified.

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  48. @ Veronica - I know, I KNOW!

    @ Pat - Trailers are total tornado magnets.

    @ NDM - People are stupid. That's what natural selection is for.

    @ Becky - It was exciting scary!

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Mmmm, comments - nom, nom, nom, nom!

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