Monday, May 30, 2011

. . . reluctantly took cover. . .

Unless you live under a rock, you are probably aware that we here in tornado alley have had quite a week of crazy weather. Joplin, Missouri is just a couple of hours south of here. Reading, Kansas is only about 10-15 miles south of where I grew up. Both were heavily damaged . . . Reading is so small that I believe almost every building in the town was either damaged or destroyed.

You would think that those occurrences would have given me a new appreciation for the power of nature and perhaps installed a bit more fear into me . . . and, really, it did. Around here, in my opinion, it's a matter of "crying wolf" though. The sirens go off frequently when nothing is going on. You become blase' about the possibility of total destruction. Imagine that.

So one day last week, someone came rushing in with the report that there was a possibility that several small tornadoes had been spotted (as opposed to one big ol' tornado) nearby. Sure enough, the sirens went off, although if we weren't listening for them, we may not have heard them in the building. Mass exodus to sub-basement containing the building's boiler room.

Very cool place with lots of old machinery, but I could not stay in one place. I wanted to see outside but of course there were no windows. . . just lots of stuff to fall on top of us if the building were to collapse. There's a definite advantage to working on the second floor. . . walking down to the boiler room doesn't take too long. But once we were down there, they would not let us go for a long time. Something close to an hour, maybe even longer.

My ADHD or maybe my claustrophia kicked in. It got hot down there. Clumps of people were clustered around laptops and Ipads. At one point, someone said a tornado was directly over the building. A security guard told me later that the clouds seem to part over the top of the building and the storm went around us. I was so glad to get out of that basement that I didn't even mind going back to work. I went back later to get these shots of the cleanest boiler room imaginable.


artistamyjo said...

Well at least you were in a safe place? I think.
I don't like closed in spaces either. Glad everything was ok.
Hugs, Amy

Marion Williams-Bennett said...

It's devastating to see how these tornadoes rip up houses and churches and towns. So much power in their random destruction.

I am with you - I hate closed spaces, and think being there during an emergency would be even worse. Good to be safe.

Barry said...

MB- really glad you had a safe place to be in; and what a bonus to discover such an amazing boiler room. Thanks for sharing the colour and texture. Go well and stay safe. B

Art said...

Wonderful creations, great work!

Martha Marshall said...

Well Mary, another thing we have in common is tornado alley! We live close to the path of the devastating Alabama storms of April 27th. I went through the area a couple of weeks ago (yes in September!) and photographed the hillsides denuded of trees, littered with roofing tin. My ancestral home was wiped out, and not for the first time in history. Scary and so sad.

I've missed your blog, but it's my fault. Life kind of gets in the way, doesn't it? Been going back through and getting inspired. You have an amazing talent.

Be well,