Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The First Tornado Warning

I wrote this last March on the anniversary of the 1st tornado warning for my facebook page, Inspired To Survive. After yesterday's brush with tornadoes I was reminded of it and decided to share it here too.  I've revised it, since obviously, today is not the anniversary. Also, another interesting connection, when I shared this at a women's group at church I learned that one of the women present at our meeting knew the Base Commander back then and remembered this happening. Talk about living history...I thought I had already revised this with his name, but will need to get in touch with my friend and get that information again. Her mother had babysat his children and Gladys said that they were a wonderful family. 

March 25th, 2012 will be the 64th anniv of the 1st U.S. tornado warning (March 25, 1948).  In March, 1948 the Tinker AF Base Commander asked his weather people to determine a way to predict a tornado. Days earlier there had been a devastating tornado in Oklahoma causing $10 million in damages and the loss of many lives. This was a terrific amount of money damages for 1948. The weather guys realized the same weather conditions existed on March 25th.  Although some scientists thought the base commander was crazy, he went out on a limb and issued a tornado warning.  As a result, lives were saved, & history was made because Okla did have another tornado that day. Those of us who live in tornado country should be forever grateful, because, although not perfect, tornado warnings help us live more safely and we depend on them many times throughout the years. Most of us cannot imagine a time without tornado warnings. Elaine Bellamy


Yes, we are just a few short weeks shy of Thanksgiving...but we had ourselves another little tornado scare last night. I don't personally have any pictures. Even if I had been stupid enough to leave my house and try to take some, our house was in the "rain wrapped" part of the storm and I wouldn't have been able to capture any. No, this little chicken was making her way to her to the basement. Plus, since our electricity was off, I had no way of tracking the storm anymore and had to assume it could be coming our way. After we finally got down there in place, I realized I had left my purse in the kitchen. Yes, of course you take your purse to the storm cellar. Think about it, it would be bad enough to recreate your life, without having to start all over without a driver's license and checkbook. We've been told it crossed Highway 9, just about 4 1/2 miles south of our house at that red dirt road that I like to take pictures of. Then, it went at an angle towards the Fort Cobb Lake, where it lifted up a bunch of the lake in a big ol waterspout and dropped it back down again. They didn't say what part of the lake this happened on, but it's not a very long lake and we're only about 2 blocks from the lake...so I'm guess it was probably closer than when it was at the red dirt road. Anyway, that's too close for comfort for me. The weathermen said this happened because we were having an unseasonably warm day, combined with all the other factors you need for a tornado.

I thought it was going to totally miss us and go more east than north (we're north). This is because I broke my long standing "weather rule". Instead of following my weather rule of changing back and forth between the 3 Oklahoma channel, we were just watching one channel. Luckily, my daughter-in-law was watching a different channel where they were using words like Fort Cobb Lake, which was really important for our well-being. So, I will definitely go back to following my weather rule of watching all channels available. There are some great local pictures circulating taken from people that I guess were not in the "rain wrapped" part of our area. I'm going to see if someone will give me permission to post one of their pic's.

This has been quite the week for Oklahoma. Although, there have been other earthquakes previously in Oklahoma and I understand we're only about 40 miles from the fault at Meers, OK, we only felt our first earthquake Saturday night. That was really odd. I could hear a strange rumbling noise starting in our bedroom north of the living room, that ran through the house from north to south. As it moved towards the living room, going on through the garage on the south, my husband and I just looked at each other and said, "was that an earthquake?" My first thought was that were were raccoons running across the roof. As loud as it was, it would have had to be quite a herd. No I don't know what groups or families of the raccoon species is called.  (I've been pretty frustrated by raccoons lately.) Sure enough, it was, an earthquake, that is. The scary part - the epicenter was well over a hundred miles from our house. It turns out there's been 2 or 3 earthquakes in Oklahoma lately. Some people around here said they felt more aftershocks yesterday after the tornado, but I guess I was distracted. Maybe it was while I was in the basement while I was worrying about the snakes...and my purse. Yes, I forgot to mention, we found evidence of  a dead snake and another snake skin in the basement. And no, this was not the first time we've had snake trouble. We are getting ready to replace our roof and do some other minor home repairs. Finding the snake entryway is going to be at the TOP of the list. Finally, we got the text message from our daughter-in-law that told us it was safe to leave the storm shelter, so we were able to escape back to the house. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Earlier this fall, we were given tickets to a rodeo in Anadarko by the MoBetta people. It had been so long since I had been to a rodeo, that I could not resist taking some pictures. Getting ready to be in the mood.
Got my tickets and keys. Time to hit the road Jack.
Note the blurred horse and rider. This is how much of my photography experience went.

Somehow I managed to get the horses to be clearer, but the foreground is blurry. Back to the drawing board...

 By now, I had kind of figured out what to do

This was the cute part of the evening, the kids' race. What got me was that there was one little boy that ran barefooted. I couldn't help but hope he didn't have any cuts on his feet, because I thought of all the bacteria that could be present in dirt where animals were. I haven't read about any children near death from running barefoot at the rodeo, so I guess it worked out ok for him.

And then it was off to the Asleep At The Wheel concert where a good time was had by all. That's all for now, have to go take care of some house duties. Happy trails.