A recap of last night (from an email sent to a friend). We were under tornado warnings for most of the evening:
Last night was pure insanity. I was walking down the stairs with my class and my professor was RIGHT behind me when I was talking to you, which is why I didn’t have time to hear the story. I was pushing it by answering the phone in the first place, but I had pulled it out to see if Alisa had text mssgd me again about the tornado warning, and that was right when you called.
Anyway, we spent the rest of the class in the first floor hallway and got out early. Alicia was in another class that moved down there, and she asked if she could stay at my house for the night. We couldn’t have her driving back to Birmingham when the tornado warning was moving up the interstate! As soon as we heard that the “tornado” was supposed to hit Northport in 20 minutes, we decided to hop in my car and make a run for it. We were seven minutes away, so we figured if there was ever a time to leave, this was it. (Okay, maybe that wasn’t the SAFEST decision ever. But we were fine.)
Alisa was thrilled to death when we walked in the apartment – she didn’t want to be alone in all this. We threw our stuff down and grabbed my laptop to run weather updates while we watched The Apprentice. That didn’t last long, though, because the weather got so bad that they cut to that instead. We grabbed the cat and moved into our “safe place” (my bathroom). Scarlett had just emailed me next month’s magazine to edit, so we gathered around the computer to look at that while weather.com ran in the background and the weather reports played on the radio. The wind was howling and the power went out briefly. We decided at that point that we should move downstairs.
We opened the front door and saw that all of our porch furniture – and more surprisingly, the lid to the grill – had blown across the porch. Alisa went ahead of Alicia and I to ensure that the neighbors were home and that it would be okay for us to bring Emma. (We couldn’t leave her alone if the roof blew off!) She signaled the okay, and we ran downstairs. Emma was clawing into my shoulder, but with good reason – this storm was so crazy, a tree blew down across the street. (I just walked outside a minute ago to see it by daylight – a crew is picking it up and moving it. It was a BIG tree.)
Once inside, we flopped down onto our neighbors’ floor while Emma explored their apartment. We made introductions over the sound of the weatherman tracking the storm throughout the county. We laughed and joked awhile until we determined that it was safe for us to go back upstairs. The wind no longer sounded like a coyote, and the rain had tapered off a bit.
It took four of us to get Emma out from under one of the girls’ bed. It’s a queen size bed, so she curled up under the center of it, where we couldn’t reach. We went to get a vacuum cleaner to scare her out, but their closet door was broken and wouldn’t open! They ended up removing – and then breaking! – the doorknob to get it loose. Finally, we were able to retrieve the cat and return to our own apartment.
Once home, Alisa treated Emma to a bowl of milk in return for all the torment she’d endured. Alicia and I prepared a meal of fish sticks, creamed corn and French bread. (Strange, I know, but it’s what she wanted!) We talked about faith some over dinner. It was interesting… she’s a Christian, as I suspected, but I think she believes in multiple paths to heaven, so to speak. (Her boyfriend’s family are Muslims.) I struggled with where the line is between harping too much on believing the “right” things and standing up for what you believe in. I definitely do NOT agree with that philosophy (“I am the way, the truth and the light. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”) But I wonder, is that a battle to enter the first time we even mention it in passing? I don’t know.