Tornado Warnings

Written by Jacqueline Newell

In the last few weeks, I have experienced a full range of Mother Nature’s mood swings.  I have encountered 60 and 70 degree days, below freezing temperatures, rain, snow and, for the very first time, a tornado.

It started out as a normal 60 degree day in February. Now, I know there is really nothing “normal” about that for us northern folk but apparently 60 degree days are a common occurrence in Kentucky around this time of year. I went about my day, knowing that a pretty bad storm was coming that afternoon but it kept getting pushing back later and later.

Around 6pm, I went to get dinner with one collegian and saw the blackening sky moving closer, full of lightning. When we returned to the house, the women warned me that we were about to get 80 mph winds and showed me where the safest places in the house to hide are. As I watched the Olympics with two collegians, I had my first experience with tornado sirens as they blared through campus.

The safest place to hide was the furnished basement that naturally could only be accessed from the outside. I threw some things, including my laptop and my stuffed animal, into a trash bag and sprinted out the front door and into the rain and lightning. I huddled in the basement with about 10 other women, watching women’s figure skating and listening to the anxiety inducing sirens.

A tornado did touch down in Bowling Green but we were lucky enough not to be effected. In the end, the chapter had the chance to see me tweaking out more than anyone else and, needless to say, I did not have a “sit face” throughout all of this.

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