Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Best Laid Plans

I had grand plans to leave by 6:00 a.m. this morning for my trip to Denton/Dallas. Well, I got up at six at least. I didn't leave town until around 7:45. But I made good time and arrived here shortly after 1:00. I went to the campus police in order to purchase my one day parking pass that I'll need tomorrow morning. After that I came to the hotel and checked in. I'm staying at a very nice Holiday Inn that I booked via Hotwire and got it for about half price. After that, I headed to six flags. You should know by now that I can't come to the Dallas area without heading to six flags to get some rides in. It's been over a year since I had been on a coaster. With all the house issues, yearbook, school etc. I really needed the coaster rush. It was a great day to go. It was overcast so it wasn't too hot and the rides were practically walk on - meaning I didn't have to wait more than 10 minutes for any coaster. I rode five different coasters (two of the twice) in less than 2 hours. By 5:00 the sky was darkening and I thought I should go ahead and head back to Denton. Traffic was o.k. for a while until it was backed up for a bit tht took about 10 minutes to get through. As I was heading back, I thought it would be nice to stop at Olive Garden, order take-out, and enjoy it in my room... but that was not meant to be. As I headed north the sky kept getting darker and lightning was flashing all around. I finally turned on the radio and as I'm going through Lewisville (which is just south of Denton) I'm hearing that there is a tornado warning for Flower Mound which is just to the west of my location at that point. (And the storm is moving east) As I near Denton, the rain is picking up and I decide maybe I should just head to the hotel. I exit and at that point the rain is pouring and the wind is blowing so badly that I get lost. I cannot see where I'm driving and there's no place for me to go in order to get away from the weather. A funnel cloud has been reported to the south and it is potentially heading my direction. I pull into a parking area because I can't see where I'm driving and I know that it's not safe to stay in my car if a tornado does come. So I turn around and I see a grain elevator. So I pull into a parking area next to it, get out of my car and run into an area that is covered, but still open to the outside. It is at least deep so I head to the back and just wait it out. Of course I have no idea if a tornado is actually going to hit since I no longer have a radio. The wind is swirling, it's raining hard, and lightning is flashing constantly. But I felt relatively safe surrounded by the cement blocks although rainwater was gushing in on one of the walls. I said a whole bunch of "Hail Mary's" while I was there. After about 20 minutes it begins to subside a little bit. I head back to my car, drive through some flooded streets and find my way back to the hotel. It was a bit of a harrowing experience for me.
So I decide to hole up in the room and just order room service... I didn't want to go out in that again! I enjoyed my dinner, then took a long bath and a hot shower, ate dessert and now I'm going to sleep shortly. (I took 1/2 a tylenol p.m. and it's starting to hit me.)


Leann said...

It's really good to hear that you made it safe and sound. Man I HATED it in Alabama when the storms would hit and funnel clouds were seen. It sounds like you are very tornado saavy and know just what to do. I also admire the way you just went to Six Flags and rode those coasters all by yourself. Good for you!

Anonymous said...

So do not say there is no action in your life!
A simple question: Why is it not safe to stay in the car?