Monday, April 23, 2007

What does a tornado look like?

I actually asked this question a few hours ago in Del Rio, Texas. I was pulling out of my hotel when we were dazzled by an immense lightning display offsetting an ominous cloud formation that reached from a low sealing down to ground. I hit the brakes to avoid running a stop sign as the sky opened in an epic downpour. I asked my friend, “What does a tornado look like”. He pointed at the cloud formation – “like that”. It was then that the sirens for a tornado warning started. We were not sure what it meant, after all, Los Angeles is tornado free. We called a Texan for advice, only to get his voice mail. We decided to drive away from the storm. It was a scary moment. We ended up stopping for a steak outside of town while we watched a dazzling lighting show. When we returned, the streets were flooded, but everything looked ok.

The local news reported that a Super Cell produced numerous tornadoes to the north and south of the city of Del Rio. I’ve had fun for one night. I never want to see a tornado again.

3 comments:

Chris said...

It's always interesting to hear an etic view of phenomenons that some people consider commonplace. Being from Oklahoma, it's very easy for someone like me to picture the scene you describe.

I suppose I would have much the same kind of reaction in the event I ever experienced an earthquake.

Johnny Crow said...

Aww come on, tornadoes are fun! especially the little ones, when there are like 10 of them. Glad to hear your ok, but even that part I miss about living in Texas. I hate floods and sometimes hurricanes (ok no one like hurricanes) and I am give or take on earthquakes since the biggest i have felt is maybe a 4 or 5.0 and not near the fault. Tornadoes however were just a part of the landscape growing up.

aidan said...

When you're a non-native of tornado country they are an awesome sight to behold. I got close enough to one that I had to grab a nearby tree for an anchor. The wind almost ripped the shirt off my back. Even so we managed to get a couple of photos.