If severe weather is nature’s way of telling me to stay away, apparently I can’t take a hint.
The last time we visited family in Texas we landed in the middle of an ice storm that stranded us in a motel room in Rhome overnight.
This time we landed in torrential rain of Biblical proportions — yes, you know, seven lean years and seven fat. They needed the rain to end their drought, but did it all have to fall in one week? More rain fell in an hour than falls in a year in Las Vegas.
On one outing the road ahead was flooded, so we took the road marked detour. That was the only detour sign there was. For at least a half hour we meandered down county roads past towns named Crafton and Newport, past roads named Bugscuffle, past the old home place where an uncle now lives. Some roads were paved, some gravel, some barely one lane wide. We rounded blind corners hoping no one was coming from the other direction. We eventually hit a road with a yellow stripe down the middle and took that as a sign of civilization. Did I mention there was no cell phone coverage for our half dozen or so cell phones, iPads and GPS devices?
Then the tornadoes hit, along with more rain, whipping winds and lightning. We spent an evening by candlelight chatting about past tornadoes we’d known and loathed, listening for that tell-tale roar-of-a-train sound that would mean it was time to dash into the center hallway. Unlike in our younger days, Mom does not have a storm cellar in the backyard.
Our favorite tale of the eccentricities of tornadoes was when our aunt and uncle and family barely made it into their storm shelter, the wind nearly ripping the door off, emerging later to find their home gone. A television set and a coffee table set on the wet floor. A fairly sizable check from a recent sale of calves or something lay on the coffee table.
We’ve tried visiting in winter and spring, perhaps we’ll try the autumn season next.