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Archive for January 8th, 2008

Tornados

Well, the big news around here is the weather, of course.   We had a line of violent storms move through the Ozarks last night.   The tornado sirens were going on and off all evening.   Things sort of settled down around 10:30 p.m., but we were awakened at 4 a.m. by another round of sirens.   This morning all they were telling us was that there were damaging straight line winds and we might want to be away from our windows.   Even so, it was a little annoying to be awakened.

We made several trips out to our shelter last night, there were hook signatures in the radar all over the place.   A tornado sort of skipped over Lebanon but hit small communities both to our north (Sleeper) and south (Phillipsburg).   So we were happy to take shelter.   A funnel could have appeared in our town.  

Well, Jim and I were happy to take shelter.   The cats had other ideas.   They did NOT approve of being toted out through the wild wind and rain with the banshees screaming (tornado sirens), and then being confined in a damp, dark, chilly place while the banshees continued to scream and every once in a while the demons of the storm would bang on the door (hail stones).    Both of them were quite upset with us.   Ruby doesn’t understand why we do the mysterious things we do, but she is happy to go along with us.   Sometimes I think I should have named her Ruth (you know, “Whither thou goest I will go, etc.”).

The most wild thing that happened to us was the hail.   The second time we emerged from the root cellar, we found the yard scattered with large hail stones, a little smaller than golf balls.   We collected a few and have them stashed in the freezer to show Jesse when he gets here.   I thought they were pretty interesting, especially the big one which is rather lozenge shaped rather than round.

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I’ll tell you, you don’t want to be under one of these when it is falling.   I’m pretty sure it would hurt like the dickens.   And these were not the largest hailstones that fell across the Ozarks, there were some in the Springfield area that were the size of baseballs.  This is why when you have your roof replaced you want to be sure the roofer puts flashing over all the holes in the roof sheathing before he puts the shingles on.  If a hailstone like those above hits a place where the shingles have no support under them, it will go right through.   We had a great roofer when we replaced our roof, and we had no damage last night, didn’t even lose any shingles.

We got 3 1/4 inches of rain last night.    Everything is WET.  Very wet.   Soaked even.   There are small ponds in the vineyard, but they will go away.

We have a tornado of another sort on the place.   One of my clients got herself a West Highland Terrier puppy, and he has been having problems being a stay at home dog while he is small.   Basically, this little dog is a ball of fire, even a tornado of energy.  Left home alone, he gets bored and finds something to do while she is gone for the 11 hours her job plus commute takes.    “Something to do” doesn’t always equate with activities that she is happy to find the results of when she gets home.   

So, we are trying a little doggy day care here.   Ruby is a very good day care worker.

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Needless to say, when Griff goes home at night, he is worn out.  

Mike disapproves.   Griff has already learned that cats are bigger than him and quite dangerous, and when they tell you they don’t want you near, perhaps you ought to listen.  I believe that this picture says it all:   “I don’t see why you think we need one of Those.”

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So, did you notice that little mention of Jesse up there, saving hailstones to show him?   He has been sent home for leave, and will be here in the next couple of days.   He is in transit right now between Baghdad and Kuwait.   I know it seems a little soon for him to be getting leave, but the people with families and children get priority in the “picking” of leave times, and then the people with seniority.   So single guys with little rank, like Jesse, end up getting sent home at very odd times.   It means he will have no respite during the heat of summer.   But we will be happy to see him any time the Army can dispense with his services.

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