This was where we first saw the tornado. This pic taken of our SHED.
Funnel clouds after the tornado moved over - From our back door
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The storm was pretty bad and warnings had been on the television for areas all around us for some hours. Goodletsville, Hendersonville and Sumner County. Nashville was suffering terribly and the tornadoes could be seen as funnel clouds hovering around the town. The announcers said seven tornadoes' had been reported. My first thought was, 'Now there is a possibility one of my worst fears will come true!' In the UK, and even here in the States on television, I had watched incredulously as tornadoes took down large buildings, devastating everything in their path.
To see a tornado from far away, very far away, would have been fascinating, but close to, is almost heart stopping!
The storm was worsening and I had been rushing around trying to get stuff together to save. Rocky my husband was getting the closet, in our gym, ready for us. At a time like this, it's almost impossible to think about which are the most important items to save. (Apart from our lives of course.) My tiny Seva (showpom) was already in my her own mesh bag and safely over my shoulder.
We have many windows and I suddenly saw black debris swirling around, in the sky near the end of our land. I told Rocky, who looked out the window and said; "They're birds." I looked again and wondered how they could fly in all directions at once. Then I noticed a shirt being blown about on a neighbours roof, across the road. When I looked closer in the sky at this strange vision, I noticed there were a few birds, but they could not possibly have liked flying in such a manner, amongst bits of trees and bushes. Then I saw stuff that looked like clothes, bits of material, empty sleeves and torn up insulation. While I was reporting to Rocky, I glanced in front of me, about fifty yards away over the tree-line.
I saw my first sighting (and last I hope) of a tornado. A swirling, whirling noise-making tornado. I felt almost hypnotized by the bass booming sound that accompanied it, which came through the noise of the storm. I have always liked bass notes, and these sounds felt like vibrations in my body. As calm as I seemed, fear had permeated my very being. I felt sure we were all going to die. But, due to the size of the tornado, I knew it would be quick. When I first announced to Rocky, "There's a tornado," my voice was so calm he did not take me seriously. I was horrified, yet mesmerized at the same time.
He replied, "It couldn't be," as he continued to get blankets ready in case we needed to go into the closet. Then the electricity went out. Rocky came closer to me and heard the roar and bass sound that accompanies a tornado. He had been through two tornado's before, so he recognized the sound immediately. Rocky ordered me into the closet. I was too mesmerized by the sound and sight, so could not listen to him.
Rocky ran from one window to another to check exactly where the tornado was heading, still calling out for me to get away from the window and go into the closet. I would not go and hide without him. Beside, I thought as we were all going to die, might as well watch the enemy coming.
As for the tornado, it was incredible. As we watched, it re-formed, swirled madly and seemed to come toward us. I was prepared for the end, but I heard Rocky call out, "No, not this way, not yet!" He moved away to look out elsewhere and told me to get away from the window. The tornado broke up slightly, went back up, then came down again, even stronger looking. It moved a few feet to each side and flew off to devastate the nearby area.
Our cell phones could not get through to anyone, and both happened to be on low charge. We could not even find out if people we knew were all right. We managed to dig out some candles, and as Rocky had been cooking a meal, it was ruined. The chops were partly cooked. Strangely enough this was very upsetting, we could have at least eaten something in the dark. We put batteries in a tape/radio system, and heard some of the news. It was sporadic and had bad reception. We had no idea of the devastation just down the road from us.
That night was one of the scariest I have ever experienced. The storm was still very bad, with the sky lighting up with lightening I had never seen before. Even the thunder was different. So loud and continuous, like constant gunfire in a way. Rocky, Seva and I lay on the bed, wondering if we would all be together when we awoke. The radio had said the tornadoes could be back this way before morning. Rocky held me in his strong arms and I stared out the window. This kind of thing never happens in the UK. Unless someone had lived through such a thing, it would be impossible to imagine how fearsome it could be.
The storm continued through the night, and the next morning we found the electricity was still out. It stayed this way for two days, which was extremely inconvenient. But, at least we never lost our lives or home. All the surrounding areas were turned into a police state. The curfew stated that anyone found between the hours of dusk and dawn, would be arrested.