Friday, September 3, 2010

This is NOT the Kind of Excitement I Need

So I've been up at the farm for the week, getting things done on my huge "to do" list. If you recall, the last time I was here for a week ( a few weeks ago), we had a pretty intense storm with heavy rain & low, rotating clouds. So Tuesday after I finished painting the ceiling in the new space, I had some dinner and then checked the radar. I have been going to to get video forecasts while I'm at the farm since we don't have TV. They update it fairly regularly. Anyway, it wasn't pretty. I huge line of storms showing red & orange on the radar heading our way. They said it could be strong winds. I saw two of the Amish neighbor boys walking back up the driveway from putting the cows in the pasture and told then to let their mom & dad know in case they needed to put anything away before the storm. I shut all the windows except the two in the "cabin room" where we live while the construction is going on. I heard a loud "wind" noise & the curtains started to blow in a little. I shut the windows, walked back to the couch & the wind hit. It was loud. I thought the building was going to come apart. I grabbed Mia (the cat) & the flashlight & ran down to the basement. I could hear a huge roaring noise that just didn't quit. I was so scared. I could hear a metal-type noise but couldn't figure out what it was. I called Steve as soon as I got Mia in her carrier. The phone was shaking in my hands, I was so freaked out. I'm sure he probably though "she is just scared cause she's there by herself and it is probably nothing." I told him I heard something outside before I ran to the basement like maybe the tree next to the house when down...I wasn't sure.  We talked a few minutes & he called me back 15 minutes or so later. It was still storming, lots of lightening. I sat downstairs for about 45 minutes I think until I decided to be brave & go upstairs & look around. I really didn't know what to expect. I looked at all the windows & none were blown in. Then I went up to the attic & the roof was still on. I was only brave because I was on the phone with Steve. So I didn't see anything that was damaged. I stayed up worrying about the neighbors & how they came through the storm until I finally got sleepy at 1am.
The next morning it was cloudy & I woke up before 7am. As I got out of bed, I looked out the closest window.The tree was still there.  Then I looked out the front window & noticed that the water trough for the horses & cows was gone. I ran over to the window facing Eli & Lizzie's. I knew something was very wrong. I could see their house (usually blocked by trees) but it looked different. The front porch roof was gone and it was too clear in their side yard. I quick got dressed & saw Eli walking down the driveway to Jim's house. I called Steve & told him what I was seeing as I looked around. I saw a piece of red metal in the pasture on the other side of our driveway & told him that it must have blown off our junk pile of stuff. He asked if I had gone outside yet & looked at the building so I walked out & it was a piece of the siding right below where he just put in the new windows.

No wonder I heard a  "metal" sound! I was one the other side of that wall.  There was also a piece of metal way up in a tree between Our house & the neighbor's.
I looked in the front of the barn (where the wind hit) but there was only a downspout damaged. There were a couple trees down in the pasture, the solar panels were okay, the rest of the barn was untouched. By that time Lizzie & a couple of the kids were walking down to see how I was. We all walked up to their house to look at the damage. I will tell you this one was hurt.
Their buggies were crushed by the barn that collapsed.
The roof was torn off the barn and everything thrown around.

Porch roof is laying in the foreground.

They also ran for the basement & stayed there for some time. They were worried about me...I was worried about them.
Neighbor Dave came over then & said he would help whatever way he could. He didn't have any damage at his place. In a half hour or so (thanks to Dave), there were two burly guys at Eli's helping cut up fallen trees in the pasture.  He also took his big end loader up there to help move debris. Jim came there next & told us that most of the large trees in front of his house were down.

At Jim & Nancy's house. Lot's of trees down.

Jim told me of the damage at Mike's house up the road from him.
Garage roof collapsed & machine shed & silos damaged.

As I went into town later that day, I noticed another barn down in the path of the storm.

The neighbor behind us didn't have any damage but a few tree limbs down but she saw the funnel cloud as lightening lit up the sky. Jim's wife saw it too. 

I am so very thankful that no one was hurt and grateful for kind neighbors. They have all offered a place for me to stay if I am frightened.  I am also happy to know that I didn't "freeze" when it hit & reacted correctly by grabbing Mia & running to the basement. ( I have often wondered what I would do)
I found a tomato in the yard by the driveway from the garden as I went to pick up a branch. It looked perfect. I picked it up & it was bruised on the bottom. It had been picked up & dropped by the tornado, and close by, a straw bale was tossed into the driveway and metal was wrapped around a tree 20 feet in the air. Amazing. I write this, I am getting freaked out all over again, so I must stop. I might write more about it some other time, but enough for now. This weekend when my daughter & family come here to visit I will be giving them an extra big hug as I will to everyone I love....and when Steve gets here tomorrow, I think I will feel safe again.


lisa said...

Oh my.. That must have been so scary..I am so glad you are safe. I hope you don't get anymore storms..Your barn/house is strong and you can find comfort in that.
You take care and hope your weekend is going to be a whole lot better than what you just went through...((HUGS)) Lisa

Lynn said...

As I was reading, I began to think you had a tornado, particularly when you mentioned the rushing sound and as you described the damage.

It must have been terribly frightening; but you did good! You are officially a "country" girl now who can weather (no pun intended) whatever comes your way.

fullfreezer said...

Oh, how frightening! We had a tornado go very near our home a few years ago. I'll never forget it. It's amazing how a community comes together after such an event. I'm glad you and all our neighbors are unharmed. Stay safe with the clean up.

All Natural Mama said...

Isn't it something how such a bad storm can be so isolated? We didn't get anything down here in Stephenson County. So glad you & all neighbors are well!
p.s. I thought I remembered that your townhouse sold earlier this year? Or did the deal fall through? For some reason, I thought you were living full-time at farm

Deborah @ Antiquity Oaks said...

Wow! How scary! Glad you're okay. I'll never cease to be amazed at how tornadoes can be so selective -- like just ripping off a piece of metal from a building. We had a tornado that just went down our road for about 1/4 mile in front of our property several years ago. It broke power lines and ripped up a huge old tree, but didn't touch anything else.

Laura said...

No that is not good excitement at all. Glad you are ok and that there was no worse damage. Your neighbors had some pretty bad hits. You are lucky to have such good people living nearby.

angie said...

Hi Barb,

Oh my goodness. What a frightening experience! Glad no one was hurt. You reacted swiftly and surely - you da woman!

Anonymous said...

Thank goodness you had the basement. We had a small tormado come through here 2 weeks ago. We still have a piece of metal hanging from the house. Have to get on a list to get repaired. I hope you have extra siding to repair yours. I'm so glad Lizzy and her family were not hurt. I feel sorry for your neighbors. What a mess to clean up...debbie

Wallene said...

So glad you are okay as are all your friend. The damage breaks my heart, but at least everyone is fine. Take care and have a wonderful weekend.

♥ Pacy said...

I'm so glad you are safe. You were very brave. When the tornado hit our town I can remember how frightened I was, and I had my family with me. I can't imagine going thru that by myself like you did. So glad everyone is safe.
♥ Pacy

ElderberryWine4u said...

Thank Goodness you and your neighbors are all right! I know how you must feel now every time you hear the wind blow.

The Three Little Bears said...

Hi, I had to move my blog again so that I can have a new blog profile as well. I will be closing this blog profile down soon. So sorry for the confusion! Here is the link to the new one, just moved everything over today:

Edain said...

Glad to hear everyone is safe, so sad about the damage though. Do take care.
Oh and I have just given you an award:
Enjoy! :)

Barb and Steve said...

Thank you so much for all the pep talks & well wishes! As I though, I felt better when Steve got there on Friday.

Country Whispers said...

Thankfully no one was hurt. I bet that was one wild storm to ride out.

Barb and Steve said...

It was...hope I never have to experience that again.