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What is your most memorable storm?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Care Bear, Jul 6, 2008.

  1. Care Bear

    Care Bear Guest

    So there's a hell of a storm in beautiful Virginia tonight. The power's not out yet, but I give it 15 minutes. You probably know the feeling. I have found old candles, old matches, and a really old flashlight that will flicker more than the candles when it is turned on-I suck at preparedness. Which harkens me back to my most memorable storm. Oklahoma City, 1986, I believe. 7 years old. Cosby Show got interrupted, local news told my family to move to an inside room because of impending tornado. So we absconded to the bathroom and heard THAT noise which I still wake up to in the middle of the night. I've always read the sound of a tornado described as a "freight train." Yeah, kind of like that, but this train was on meth. Tornado sirens blaring. I don't miss Oklahoma. What is your most memorable storm experience?
  2. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    I've been "blessed" to be in the right place at the right time for three of the worst storms in the last 20 years...
    1) In 1993, I was a high school junior in New Jersey when the Superstorm blew up. Basically, it was a winter hurricane that stretched from Maine to Cuba. Damned powerful stuff. We got the snow end of it. We were housebound for a long weekend, so I spent most of the time upstairs in my room. While watching the snow howl in 70 mph winds, a little bird landed on the ledge outside my window to rest. It just amazed me that in all of this fury, there could be a moment that peaceful and sweet.
    2) In 1996, I was home for Christmas when the Blizzard of '96 dumped two feet of snow on that area. I remember trying to dig out, and seeing -- from that same upstairs window -- a Ford Escort that had been plowed under (we lived on a main street, and this thing was just buried). All I could see from my window was the roof of the car. From street level it looked like a big snow drift.
    3) In 2005, I was in Mississippi for Katrina. Not the Coast, thank goodness. But when it was just starting to blow in that Monday morning, I drove through the first squalls to get from my future wife's house to the apartment in the town where I work. Spent the rest of the afternoon with the windows open, since the power went out around 2 p.m., listening to the wind, watching oak trees sway, and seeing shingles fly off the roof and across the courtyard.
    Then, there was the next week, when it felt like society was on the verge of breaking down. No power in the southern half of the state meant long lines at the few gas stations that had both power and gas, and of course there was the dawning horror of how bad the Coast and New Orleans had gotten it. Listening to WWL out of N.O., the only station there still broadcasting, was like listening to a live report from hell.
  3. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    Tornado in 2001.
    Power goes out at my apartment. I call one of my roommates. He decides to stay with his parents in Baltimore overnight. I call my folks. Turns out they have power. Dad #1 comes to pick me up (this is before I had my own car). I spent the first night at my fathers' house.

    The next night, I ended up staying back at the apartment even though we still had no power. By then, I and my other roommate decide to go to Giant to pick up the ingredients for s'mores and some beer. We set up some tea lights, crack open the beer and roast the marshmallows over the tea lights. We start hanging out and just shooting the shit. At one point, I raise a toast and say, "to the stuff future stories will be made of."

    Hurricane in 1999.
    The fathers are in France. I'm by myself in the house and the power goes out for a couple of days. I set the security alarm overnight because I didn't know any better. At about 6 in the morning, the alarm sounds its piercing shriek. I defeat the alarm and wait for the phone call from the alarm company. I found out that the alarm does that when it runs low of power, which it did because the power was out.

    The next day, I have to go into school. At one point, I go to The Diamondback. When I get there, the managing editor tells me, "forever_town, call your grandmother." I groan. She's been known to call us several times a day. This is before she came down with some form of dementia, so it drives us absolutely crazy. But now I have to deal with her calling me at the newsroom. Oy!

    Later that week, I go to Baltimore for a Donna Summer concert. She made mention of the hurricane that struck the area during the show.

    Hurricane in 2003.
    Power goes out again. This time, the Dads and I are home. When the power goes out, we have a back up sump pump that's supposed to kick in and keep water from flooding the basement. Only problem is, the battery's dead! That means we have to physically bail water to keep the basement from being flooded. I think we were finally in the clear about 4 a.m. I think I turned in at 2 a.m. I was beyond zonked.

    Anyway, we go to get a new battery the next day and we find out that we should have exercised the battery at least once a month to keep it fresh. That night, it rained again, but the back up sump pump worked. At least we had that now.

    I was supposed to go for a job interview that Monday. Power was still out. I had my father wake me up as a back up plan to my using my watch as an alarm clock. I showered and shaved by battery-powered lantern light. I schlep all the way to Bethesda and find out the office where I was supposed to interview still didn't have power. I left a note, then I called the next day and rescheduled the interview.

    I ended up getting that job.
  4. lono

    lono Active Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  5. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    Storm, not nightmare, Lono (yeah, I know who it is... )
  6. Steak Snabler

    Steak Snabler Well-Known Member

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  7. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    clinton's first inaugral day storm in seattle. hurricane force winds, hiding in an inner room of my junior high, watching 15 foot evergreen branches sail by, having to walk home because all the roads were closed. oh and we didn't have power for 7 days. it got real old.
  8. slappy4428

    slappy4428 Active Member

    1974 (I think) Snowed 26 inches in Detroit on Thanksgiving weekend and we had a full week off school.
  9. Inky_Wretch

    Inky_Wretch Well-Known Member

    Back in 2000, we had six inches of ice on Christmas. Not snow and ice. Six inches of freezing rain which accumulated on everything. It was a frozen hell. Naturally, power lines were coming down left and right. Luckily, we never lost power but we didn't leave the house for four days.
  10. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Can't remember the name of which hurricane of the many that hit Florida a few years back, but one hit my rural area hard and knocked out power to the newspaper bureau and almost everything in town. My old house down the street inexplicably retained power and the entire office came over to put the paper out for three days. It was pretty exciting in that newsjunkie-adrenaline way. The editors at the home office were very appreciative and treated us to a tremendous dinner about a month later.
  11. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    May of 2003, I'm only in my hometown to move my mom, who'd had a stroke, from rehab to her new place in assisted living.

    Sometime after midnight, I'm asleep in the guest bedroom of her condo and I am awakened by the storm outside. The usual, rain lashing the window and thunder and lightning.

    Except there's a lot of lightning. At times, almost uninterrupted flashes.

    I decided I'd pad into the kitchen for some reason. I get in there and the noise outside, already pretty loud, gets louder.

    At that point, the ol' spider sense kicks in. For the first time ever, it occured to me that maybe I had better find one of those "interior rooms" the weatherman always talks about.

    That would be the master bath. Just as I began to shut the door, the windows on the north side of the condo blew in. The storm raged for just a little while after that.

    Of course, I'd left the bedroom in my bare feet. The first challenge was to get in, get my clothes and shoes (and cell phone) and avoid tearing up my feet, Die Hard-style.

    What followed was a long night. It was very difficult to find a path out of the condo complex and neighborhood that wasn't either under a couple of feet of water or blocked by felled trees.

    First thing, I wanted to see if my mother and grandmother ... both were, for a little while, in the same rehab facility ... were OK. They were.

    I eventually got to Wal-Mart (some of you, I suppose, would have waited until morning for Target to open) and bought enough plastic sheeting to cover our windows and the windows of the lady next door. I made a plywood run after sunup.

    I actually don't think this was a tornado, just a very intense burst of wind. We got pretty good weather data on it because mom's condo was located next to the little airport in town.

    As my wife likes to say, I'm a lot more "weather alert" since then.
  12. Hustle

    Hustle Guest

    I remember that one quite well. In eastern Pa., we'd typically have less than 6" of snow in an average storm; that one dropped two feet, and I remember it came down like crazy, like I'd never seen in my life. I remember the news reports that night; our State Police announced that unless you had a damn good reason to be out - media, doctors, emergency personnel - you'd be cited if you left the house. I begged my parents to let me head down to the local ski area the next day, but they said no. :( (A friend that did go said it was as close as you could get to western powder.)

    I also had forgotten how massive that thing was until Batman mentioned it and I looked it up: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Storm_of_the_Century_%281993%29

    I'd also nominate Hurricane Isabel. Though it had weakened significantly by the time it reached DC, it was still a weak hurricane or strong tropical storm. I'll never forget looking out the window and seeing the trees sway in the wind and wondering if any of them would topple and break through our windows. We were without power for several days, though others were far worse off than us.

    If you remember your timelines, that was around the time when the U.S. women's soccer team was gearing up for the World Cup here. I was supposed to attend a practice in DC just hours before the storm reached us; I left the house, not knowing the practice had been canceled. While driving through the city, I thought I saw a flash of light in my rear-view mirror. A few days later, my suspicions were confirmed when a speeding ticket arrived from Metropolitan Police. I thought long and hard about challenging it - yeah, I was speeding but only to try and outrun a fucking HURRICANE - but paid the $50 and have been bitter ever since.
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