We’ve had two storms since Thursday: one in my intestines and one in our yard.
I’m only mentioning the internal unrest because I feel it pertains to the tests I had on Wednesday. In preparation for those tests, I had to drink about 48 ounces of some vile liquid and was injected with a radioactive material. Yes, that is exactly as fun as it sounds. Before the day was out, I discovered I was one of the few people who had side effects from one of those two ingredients. (When I asked a tech what was going on in my stomach, he said, “Oh, yes, some people have problems with that.”)
So, the “problem” was manageable until Friday, when I went beyond praying to the porcelain god and went straight to cursing all gods, everywhere, known throughout all time. I subsisted throughout the day and most of Saturday on ice made from Gatorade. (Save this idea for a hot summer day. It tastes like a Gatorade-flavored snow cone. Now I’m handing out recipes.) Only today, have I attempted what you might consider “solid food,” in the form of a small baked potato and a bowl of tomato soup. After three days of sugar water and saltines, my taste buds are all messed up. I had to salt canned soup. Actually, it was organic soup in one of those shelf-stable boxes. Sea salt was the fifth or sixth ingredient and I’m guessing table salt is probably the main component of regular canned soup. Maybe it wasn’t just my taste buds, but years of expectations built up by the Campbell’s corporation.
The more wild storm happened in our front yard. We had a fierce storm with tornado-generating potential move through central Indiana Friday night that apparently didn’t actually generate any real tornadoes. It did, however, knock down two healthy trees in our yard and one each in our bordering neighbors’ yards. It also chopped off the top half of a massive pine tree in our yard and knocked a substantial branch out of another. Our favorite tree (in the woods we call our yard) was one that got hit. It was a 70-foot high, 2-foot diameter oak and a great shade tree. (I loved this tree. I feel like we should write a eulogy.) It fell directly toward the house and the tips of the tree brushed our end garage. However, it caused no damage, other than dumping our rowboat into the ravine! The only damage we sustained was the loss of the rearview mirror of our truck that was parked below the big limb that fell.
We huddled in the basement during the wild storm, getting there just 30 seconds or so before the tree closest to the house snapped. We thought we were in a real tornado with debris hitting the house! Then, another minute passed and hail started pounding the house. The hail lasted for a very long time, 15-20 minutes by our estimate. It was definitely the longest hailstorm I’ve ever heard. We soon lost power. After that, all calmed down, but we stayed huddled in the dark basement until we heard on the weather radio that the storm had passed.
All of the trees that fell were snapped below the surface of the earth. So, it was as if they were upended, except no roots came with them. And they were all healthy trees, showing no signs of rot. All in the neighborhood (including some more across the road) were in a straight line following the heading of the storm. It was pretty interesting to put all of this together as we tried to clean up the mess!
We spent much of Saturday afternoon trying to clean up the tree that fell against the house, but barely made a dent in it. I wasn’t much help, still recovering from my little health crisis. Mark C. jumped in to give us a hand, but the tree was just so huge there was only so much we all could get done. We’ll be cleaning this up for a while. The second tree that snapped was behind our house in the serious “woods,” so we don’t need to get to it in a hurry.
We celebrated the fact that the landscaping equipment that is around the yard was untouched. It would have been sad to have to call the landscapers to tell them the wall had been destroyed or their backhoe was under a tree. So, in a real slap in the face, we returned home after lunch on Sunday to find a large limb lying across the backhoe! Apparently, it had broken up high in a tree during the storm and decided to fall while we were away Sunday. Fortunately, it doesn’t seem to have damaged anything.
Today, we had an Easter dinner and celebrated my and Colleen’s birthdays with family. It was a great, quiet gathering in the midst of the frazzled existence we have.