Saturday, June 30, 2012

Have You Seen My Patio Table Anywhere?


Because of the storm that we got hit with yesterday afternoon, this post is being made from the air-conditioned family room of older daughter, Kara, and her husband, Adam. Though they live just half an hour away from us, their community was spared severe damage and power loss.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The outside thermometer in my car
registered 111° at about 2:30 p.m. on
Thursday in Ft. Wayne.
This has certainly been a week. Oh yes it has. First, we tied the all-time record high EVER, of 106°, on Thursday. I remember the last time we hit that. It was in 1988 - the year of the last drought. I've heard my grandma talk many times about the other two times it happened, in 1934 and 1936. Grandma said the cracks were so big in the yard that the little chicks fell into them and couldn't get back out.

We haven't had but two-tenths of an inch of rain since the first of May and it's causing all kinds of chaotic nastiness, from field fires to cancellation of 4th of July fireworks celebrations  to crunchy lawns (in JUNE!) to field corn tasseling out at just three feet tall. I've been praying for rain and yesterday, we got some. But we got more than that. We got WIND.

I was running the sprinkler all day in the garden and had just gone out to move it when I happened to notice the sky in the west. It looked kinda darkish. Looking straight up overhead, there was nothing but crystal blue and sunshine, so I figured the darker blue was just an optical illusion due to cosmic atmospheric weirdness. And then I heard the thunder.

I turned the sprinkler off because, by golly, from the looks of things, we just might actually get some rain out of this one. All spring, storms had been splitting when they got to the Ohio state line and gone north and south of us, but this was looking promising. Walking back to the house, I decided to go in and grab my camera to take some pictures of the darkening sky.



As I was doing that, BAM! Just like that, the wind kicked up and things started hitting my legs. I snapped a couple more photos just as the storm was ready to cross the road into our yard, then tried to go into the house. It took every bit of strength I had to open the front door and head for the basement. I didn't need the National Weather Service to tell me this was a serious storm (about which they'd apparently just put the word out, unbeknownst to me). A tornado warning had been issued for our county.

The last photo I took before heading for cover. It was at this point that my
legs were getting pelted with little bits of debris. No rain yet, just wind.


About that time, Romie got home and couldn't open the front door, so he went around back and he joined me in the basement. The power had gone out shortly after the storm began, so we used our flashlights to get around down there in the dark. We could hear the wind whistling above us and I thought for sure the next sound was going to be the second story crashing into the first and on into the basement, or worse - blowing away altogether.

After about 15 minutes or so, it sounded like things were letting up, so we emerged from the basement and took a look. Still blowing, but not a lot of rain , don't you know. We looked outside and could see branches coming down and trash bins flying. A little while later, it started to clear and we went out to assess the damage.



The first thing we noticed was the huge branch out of our 200-year-old oak tree in the front yard. There are several dead branches in it, but those remained and a healthy, live branch was lost. Many smaller ones were broken out, too.



Next, the front porch railing was slightly askew. The corner post was broken off at the base, so guess who's getting new front porch railing? Amazingly, the two flower boxes that were hanging on the railing didn't fall off.



The mess at the back of the house was another thing. Branches down, of course, but chairs and cushions had been tossed...



But WHERE WAS THE TABLE? And the umbrella that was in the table?

Those poor tomatoes on the left, that were in the GrowBox, amazingly enough,
did not have their main stems broken, in spite of the trellis attachment
coming completely apart.


The twirling tulip was on the verge of losing its petals...



The honeysuckle trellis was hanging on for dear life...

We ended up having to cut the honeysuckle off at about a foot out of the ground.

There's a Rose of Sharon tree on a standard under there, on the left.
It didn't break! Considering the prolonged dry weather, I'm surprised it
didn't just snap off.

Next door, the neighbor kids experienced a shipwreck...


 The side addition to their storage barn ended up in our yard...


Back in Max's Garden, the Tom Torrens sculpture was blown over the fence...


After it was determined that the umbrella and table were in the bottom of the pool, Romie put his swim trunks on and went after them.


Neighbor Tim helped with the patio furniture recovery.

Once we got the immediate issues taken care of, we hopped in the car to take a look at the damage around us. Just a mile east, the entire mile of power poles had been snapped off like dominoes.


At the cemetery down the road, there was a common sight throughout the area...


Before the evening was over, we packed up two coolers with the contents of our freezer and I headed to Defiance, hopeful that daughter Kara had room in her freezer for our things. We had no cell phone or internet service and land line phone service was out as well, so there was no way to call her ahead of time to find out. Luckily, she had room in the freezer and room for an overnight guest.

The storm, called a derecho, left a swath of destruction from Illinois all the way to Delaware and Washington, D.C. More than two million are without power and there have been several deaths and injuries.

A derecho (Spanish: derecho "straight"), is a widespread and long-lived, violent convectively induced straight-line windstorm that is associated with a fast-moving band of severe thunderstorms in the form of a squall line usually taking the form of a bow echo. Derechos blow in the direction of movement of their associated storms, similar to a gust front, except that the wind is sustained and generally increases in strength behind the "gust" front. Derechos in North America form predominantly from May to August, peaking in frequency during the latter part of June into July. (Wikipedia)

Winds were clocked at 91 mph in Fort Wayne and the temperature dropped from 96° at the time of the storm's start to 65° right after it had passed through. Power may not be restored until Wednesday evening and temperatures are expected to be in the 90s for the next few days. Activities will definitely be different. Anyone for a game of Pick-Up Sticks?

17 comments:

nancybond said...

Kylee! That must have been terrifying. Thank goodness you're okay and the damage, though a real mess, is all fixable. (((hugs)))

Jean said...

Looks like you missed the worst of that storm! They had mentioned Ohio and don't ask me why I thought of you but I did. Just glad no more stuff was damaged than was...and you are both ok.

Kara said...

I am so glad you are OK! I want to cry when I look at your ripped up yard!

That Bloomin' Garden said...

Oh my Kylee, stay safe. So glad you went to your daughters place. What devastation! I sit here looking out at the rain here in BC thankful that we don't get tornados. I can't imagine heat like you described. Its only 65F here today.

Annie Haven | Authentic Haven Brand said...

Wow, Kylee so sorry to see all the damage but happy you and your husband are safe Hugs

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

How scary! We have been hearing some about the storms out here. My cousin lives in Ohio and showed a whole row of cars that had all the rear windows blown out. I'm so glad you all are safe and hope your garden will recover from the storm and drought.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I am so glad to hear that you and Romie are ok. What a mess to have to clean up in this horrid heat. Do take care.

Theresa said...

Oh my gosh Kylee! What a storm! I'm so sorry to see the state of parts of your garden -- but so GLAD that you are okay. Whew! That was scary!

Cindy Garber Iverson said...

I am SO GLAD you are okay and that it wasn't a tornado that took your whole house! Still, I grieve for you with your loss of your tree branches. The photos of the trees lost in the cemetery break my heart. Please continue to stay safe.

Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

Freda Cameron said...

Glad you are okay! How frightening!

Lona said...

I was going to check my roof to see if it was upon it along with all of the other limbs, leaves and sticks. Wasn't that wind just terrible? I was scared for the first time during a storm Friday. Golly you sure have a mess there Kylee. Sorry about all of the destruction. Glad you found the table.

Darla said...

How scary! I am glad to read that you are safe.

The Frizzy Hooker said...

Wow! I heard about the storms. Your pictures tell a complete story.

sensiblegardeing said...

We are in southern BC Canada. This spring has been recored breaking rain and wind storms and most are coming up to us from the south east. I think our storm patterns may be connected. We too had a storm from you know where, 2 large 60 foot pines down, one across the driveway and one into the pool. Lucky no one was hurt and damage was limited.

nicole said...

Kylee-
So glad to hear that you and Romie are safe-how did your cats and chickens fare through the storm? We live in SE Ks and got hit by a storm in late February-took off all of our barn roof, the north & south walls, and all our
pig shelter roofs, and knocked our chicken coop off the foundation. All of our chickens, pigs (even the 9 new babies), cats and dog and my husband and I were safe-the rest can be replaced. Good luck with the clean-up-I will be thinking of you!!

nicole said...

Kylee-
So glad to hear that you and Romie are safe-how did your cats and chickens fare through the storm? We live in SE Ks and were hit by a storm in late February-took off our barn roof, the north and south walls, all of our pig shelter roofs and the chicken coop was blown off the foundation, and stuff blown in all 4 directions.
All of our chickens, pigs (even the 9 new babies), cats and dog and my husband & I were safe-the rest can be replaced. Good luck with your clean-up-I'll be thinking of you!!!

Kylee Baumle said...

Nancy ~ Yes, it's all fixable and that's what counts. We're pretty fortunate, compared to what some of our neighbors have to deal with. Hugs back!

Jean ~ The worst thing now is that our electric company isn't even giving us a date for when power will be restored. :-(

Kara ~ Well, the yard will survive and will eventually get back to normal. We'll be using the pool water to water container plants and those that really need it. It will be turning green soon anyway.

That Bloomin' Garden ~ I'm staying with the other daughter for the time being while Romie is holding down the fort. It's to be in the mid-90s all week and the power company doesn't yet know when the power will be restored for us. :-(

Annie ~ We're fine. Thanks, Annie.

Catherine ~ Yeah, it's been interesting, to say the least.

Lisa ~ We're only doing minimal clean-up right now. It's just too hot and we don't really have any immediate way to cool down. It can wait!

Theresa ~ Thanks. Yes, pretty scary! We just really want our power back now.

Cindy ~ We're pretty fortunate, really. All fixable. We just want our electrical power back!

Freda ~ We're fine. It's just really hot (in the mid-90s all week) and we'd like to have our electricity back!

Lona ~ Isn't it weird to think that this storm was so widespread that we both were so deeply affected by it like this? Hope things are on the way to getting back to normal for you, too.

Darla ~ Thank you, Darla. :-)

sensiblegardening ~ We've been setting all kinds of records too, since March. Not good ones, either! Sorry to hear about your damage, too, and glad you were okay!

nicole ~ The cats and chickens seemed to be just fine, although Lily showed up soaking wet and with leaf debris in her fur. She's our wanderer, so I don't know where she hunkered down during the storm.

Sounds like you guys really got hit! That's amazing that all the animals made it through okay! Glad you were safe, too. *hugs*

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