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We Try It: Being in the Middle of a Tornado

Until Tuesday afternoon, this slot was going to be about the Steam sale and a review of a game I bought. Then a tornado went through my neighborhood. 

Firstly, everyone is fine. There were no (at the time of this writing) injuries reported, just lots and lots of damage.

Tornado warnings are as ubiquitous as ice cream trucks during an Indiana summer. Typically, I’ll peek at the sky and decide whether or not a warning is worth worrying about. Today, when the alert on my phone went off and I peeked outside, I saw the tornado form, right above the neighbor’s house. I grabbed all three cats, which is even trickier than it sounds, a Diet Coke, and my phone, and we headed to the basement. As soon as we were settled (thank CJ), the power went out, so the cats and I listened to the storm above bathed in the soft blue glow of the Facebook app.

Tornadoes really do sound like freight trains.

Once it quieted down, we gave it another fifteen minutes and poked our heads out. The destruction, while not nearly as bad as other disaster areas I’ve seen, was pretty bad. Most of the trees on my block are gone. My tree is split in half, but still standing. (Can one duct tape a tree?) The street was littered with long, twisted strips of siding, shutters, branches, and fiberglass insulation bits. I took a walk around the three closest blocks to check on my neighbors, and discovered three houses missing part or all of their roofs, several houses with most of the siding stripped, and the remains of many fences. The worst damage was on the third block from here, where a house was destroyed by a flying Winnebago.

It’s going to take a long time to clean up, but the whole neighborhood is chipping in to make the work lighter, and it’s really highlighted what great people live here.

I’ll never be nonchalant about another tornado warning.

By [E] Selena MacIntosh*

Selena MacIntosh is the owner and editor of Persephone Magazine. She also fixes it when it breaks. She is fueled by Diet Coke, coffee with a lot of cream in it, and cat hair.

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