“In the eye of the tornado, there’s no more high and low, no floor and sky.”- Francis Alys
In my last post, I said
“I live in Richmond, Virginia. Hurricane Florence isn’t supposed to directly hit where I live. There should just be a bit of rain.”
Oh, how I was wrong. Hurricane Florence did cause rain, but that wasn’t the only thing. Something else happened. Something much worse. Yesterday, 13 tornadoes touched down in Virginia. That’s right, 13. And you know what’s the scariest, I was right next to one.
Last Friday, schools were closed because of Hurricane Florence. Nothing happened on that day. It hardly rained, and there was no wind. In fact, they even apologized for closing the school for no reason.
Everyone thought that was the end. That Hurricane Florence had just disappeared. On Monday all staff and students were expected to come to school. I went to school as usual. Somewhere around 10:00 am it started raining. Like pretty bad rain. It went on like that for the majority of the day. I had an early dismissal at 2:00 pm. I needed to go for a checkup. Even before the chaos started, reaching the doctor’s office was a hassle. My dad and I got lost so many times. We had the wrong address and we ended up in a residential building. That’s where I got the first alert. There was a tornado watch in my area. I didn’t think twice about it, because it had happened a lot and it never truly amounted to anything. My mind was also diverted because we were late for our appointment by at least an hour. Our doctor was nice enough to still do the checkup.
As the checkup began the doctor said something like…
“This weather is really crazy. They are holding my kids at school until the weather calms down.”
This was when I realized that the watch was serious. But in the back of my mind, I still thought “it’s just a watch.” What I didn’t notice was my phone alerting me of the growing danger.
The doctor did a few tests and then she left the room for a bit. When she came back she told me that I needed to go and shelter. They moved all the patients to a hallway including me. What had been a watch had changed to a tornado warning.
A tornado warning means that a tornado has been picked up on a radar. It was really close to me. I went outside to get some footage. Yes, I know I am crazy for going outside during a tornado but… it looks so cool and scary.
Right after that, I was told to get back inside and wait. I waited for 2 hours after I decided to leave. The tornado had moved away and it was relatively safe to drive. My dad and I drove back home. You would think that that would be it, but there wasn’t only one tornado. There were more, and one of them was coming straight for my house.
It didn’t take long before it started getting really dark. There was lightning everywhere. You could see the ominous clouds slowly moving in. It looked bad. I just waited. There wasn’t much I could do. But I do think waiting is sometimes, the best thing you can do. I don’t know what happened, maybe my awesome waiting skills, but the funnel-shaped clouds dissipated. We were safe.
While this was happening, my friends were stuck in school. They were literally not allowed to leave. What I heard was that they were dismissed at 6:30. That must have sucked.
It’s extraordinary how much damage mother nature’s anger can cause. But, we bring it upon ourselves. By polluting the air and causing global warming the planet is slowly dying. We are making stronger/more dangerous storms. We need to end this. If we don’t we may not make it through the next superstorm.
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