When I woke up yesterday morning, I could never have predicted the crazy tornado-filled adventure that would become my weekend. I’m happy to say that I survived my first tornado warning, but it was a truly terrifying experience.
Yesterday afternoon, I went with friends to see the Carolina Rollergirls play at Dorton Arena. None of us had ever been before, and were excited to see what the rollergirls’ derby was all about. Before the derby began, the announcer talked through an evacuation plan. What?! We knew there was a potential for storms, but didn’t know why an evacuation plan was necessary. Also, the sound system is terrible in the arena, so we couldn’t hear the plan. Off to a great start already.
Well, about five minutes into the derby, the tornado siren sounded, and everyone started filing down to the basement of the arena. The walls of the arena are all glass, which was a major reason why we needed to get below ground. Down in the basement, we all lined up against the walls to wait out the tornado. People were really good about keeping everyone informed, and came around to update us on the storm situation. At one point, they told us to kneel on the ground, and then all of a sudden “cover your heads!” was shouted, probably when the tornado was closest to us. We stayed like this for about 10 minutes before it was clear that the worst was over. All together, we were down there for about 45 minutes, during which I alternated between making jokes, praying and freaking out.
The arena started flooding, so when we were allowed back upstairs we had to dodge puddles. There was quite a long line at the beer cart (can’t imagine why), but at this point we were more than ready to go home.
When I got home, I discovered that the power was out (and still is, unfortunately). I also learned that the tornado hit downtown Raleigh, and at one point was about .5 miles from my house. Check out this video of the tornado taken from the RBC Plaza:
Instead of hanging out in my powerless house by myself, I headed over to two friends’ house. They didn’t have power either but there was no way I was hanging out solo for the rest of the night. For some reason I brought over red velvet chocolate chip cookies and cheese; apparently these are my most precious food items that I wanted to save 🙂 We lit ridiculous amounts of candles and spent the night watching movies on laptops and grilling pizzas. It was quite romantic actually 🙂
Watching Harry Potter 2
Making grilled pizza by candlelight
Lots of candles
Thanks to friends, yesterday’s unexpected adventure ended much more positively than it began. I’m glad I survived my first tornado warning, and am really hoping that I don’t have to experience another one for a really long time, if not ever!