Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Storm of the century. Or at least the last few years.

Can we talk about the weather for a minute? Or a few? I know weather is not the most interesting topic, but I'm a big fan. When I was younger I wanted to be a storm chaser. Shoot, I still do! I would have dreams about chasing tornadoes and then them chasing me. We never crossed paths though.

Austinites, you know what I'm talking about. Last night/this morning was the craziest storm ever. Okay maybe not ever, but the craziest that I can remember. And I lived for five years in tornado alley y'all (did you know that there are more tornadoes in Texas annually than any other state? I betcha didn't!). We had some wild storms in Denton, lots of tornado warnings (tornado sirens are probably the scariest sound EVER), watches, and this year one actually touched down. But last night, it got seriously cray cray here in Austin. This storm was intense. I have never heard/seen so much thunder and lightening in my life. It was constant, nonstop all night and into the morning. And it POURED. And there was wind.

All night lightening was cracking, thunder was booming, and the apartment was shaking. ALL NIGHT. I could barely sleep (which suuucks since I had to get up at 4:25) it was so loud. When I opened the door to leave for work this morning I literally laughed out loud and immediately shut it because what I saw was so ridiculous. Seriously, ri-dic-u-lous. I had to reorganize my strategy of getting to the car because it looked like a scene from a movie (like Twister, or as a friend on facebook called it, War of the Worlds) outside. I wish I had taken a picture. There was a LAKE in front of our apartment. I am surprised our apartment didn't flood, although Brendon's car did (booooo), as did many others in the lot I'm sure. I had to wade through probably a good half foot of standing water. PLUS it basically looked like a strobe light was on from all the lightening. Aaaand there was a crap ton of heavy rain blowing sideways in the ridiculous wind. It was out of control. My umbrella did me no good but thank goodness for my rainboots.

My usual easy breezy 7 minute commute down IH35 this morning was the scariest drive of my life. I was doing like 40 and couldn't see more than a car length in front or behind me. I almost hit a truck getting on the highway because I couldn't see anything. At all. I was like, "oh cool, there's no one else on the road, sweet!" then SWOOOOOSH big old truck barrels down the road around me. Mini-heart attack. Aside from myself the only other cars on the road were 18-wheelers (as is the norm at 4something am) but they were flying past me, throwing up all kinds of lovely water, because obviously the torrential rain wasn't enough of a driving challenge. It was terrifying. I was almost positive I wasn't going to make it. I basically hydroplaned the whole way. IT WAS NUTS. As I was driving all kinds of insane thoughts went through my head. I was like, "okay, this is it. This is the end. I'm going to crash. Which way should I lean when it happens? I hope it doesn't hurt too bad. Should I keep my hands on the wheel or just let go and wing it? It was a good run Xterra, thanks for being a tank. Who is going to open the store? How lame is it that I'm going to die on my way to work?" I braced myself the whole time to slide into a truck or a concrete barrier or off into oblivion. But, contrary to my assumptions, the Xterra and I made it safe and sound. I wanted to kiss the ground when I got into the parking lot at work, but there was a delivery truck waiting for me and I didn't want him to think I was weird. Plus there was a hurricane of rain outside so I just made a mad dash into the store. And THAT people, was all before 5am. I don't even want to talk about the rest of my day, but lets just say it was long (and it's only 3:30?). BUT, I survived the death gauntlet that was IH35 this morning and am alive with a fully intact vehicle. And I am grateful. I hope that everyone else made it to their destinations safely and were hopefully not too soggy by the end of it.

So thanks Texas, for making up for almost a years worth of zero weather in 24 hours. You're the worst best. Because as much as I complained, like I said, I love weather and I LOVE storms. I just wish I could have enjoyed it at home and not necessarily by being out in it.

Also, sorry if you read all that. I can't imagine it benefited your life in anyway (do any of my posts really?), unless you are a weather fiend like me. I just had to share.

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