Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Stormy weather

It's tornado season in the South, but things don't usually get cranked up here until May. I hadn't gotten around to replenishing our stockpile of batteries, bottled water and canned tuna when we nearly got blown away on Friday.

Not only has the bad part of the season started early, this first storm system reorganized, arrived several hours early and hit during lunchtime rush hour. One minute, the weather was calm and mostly cloudy. The next, my whole family was crammed under the stairs with no power as an EF2 passed overhead, barely missing our neighborhood.

Total storm damage to the area is $10 $50 million. We were fortunate that our power was restored Friday evening, but several areas are still in the dark. There are more blue tarps covering far more roofs than when Katrina blew through here as a Category 1 hurricane. The subdivision up the street sustained heavy damage and my neighbors across the street are living in their RV because a huge oak landed on their house. Today, I drove through our old neighborhood a few miles away. Nearly every house on the first three blocks has moderate to severe damage.


Jack has killed TWO SNAKES in our house in the last TWO DAYS. Katie found the first one in the kitchen on Monday (she isn't afraid of critters, so she announced it as if she was letting us know the mail had run: Um, I think there is a small snake in our kitchen.). I found another one tonight in the foyer...and nearly suffered moderate to severe damage trying to get away from the blasted thing.

As best we can tell, both were brown water snakes. Totally harmless and about a foot long, but once they get in the house, in my opinion they may as well be 15-foot-long venomous killers. Jack killed both with the garden hoe (so now I have hoe dents in my graphic orange '70s linoleum .). Jack--or someone who is not me--will be taking their little dead bodies to the county extension office for a positive ID tomorrow.

I am currently barricaded upstairs in Dagny's room with my laptop, glass of iced tea and comfy pajamas. Since I have all I need here, I see no reason to go downstairs ever again. Katie will be bringing my meals and refreshing my tea as needed.

As I type this, my feet aren't even touching the floor.

Snakes, y'all.
In my house.

It is going to take me several weeks to recover from this.


Andrea R said...


Rational Jenn said...

I wondered if you were hit by those storms--I'm glad you're all okay! Tornadoes have been popping up in the weirdest times and places this spring.

And snakes--we had a snake in our apartment when we first moved to Atlanta. I thought I was going to die. Little bitty non-venomous snake. It was months before I could comfortably walk around barefoot. So you have my sympathy! I have since managed to overcome much of my snake phobia, such that I'm actually thrilled to have a kingsnake living in our front bushes next to the porch. But he'd better not come in the house. :o)

Nancy said...

Oh my another one!

Lisa said...

Actually, that $10 million was an early figure. Insurance claims have surpassed $50 million now. Amazing. The number of trees down along Atkins is just stunning.

Natalie said...

Hi Lisa,

And thanks. I wondered if the figure had gone up, but wow, $50 million? I believe it, based on what I've seen here alone. I haven't been to NE Jackson since Friday, but I hear it's much worse.

We're supposed to get it again tonight and tomorrow. Y'all be safe.

Natalie said...

Andrea, you should hear some of the snake stories I've been told since this happened. One of my friends on the coast said she was sunbathing and fell asleep. When she woke up, she thought her cat had curled up on her legs and reached down to pet it...but it was a big black snake.

Now, *that* would have scarred me for life.

Natalie said...

Nancy, ask Loren if he wants to come catch one and keep it for a pet!

Jenn, I don't mind the ones outside (you know, as long as they stay waaaay over there). There is just something...wrong and unnatural...about seeing a SNAKE laying on the floor in front of the refrigerator.

I half expect to see another one soon. And it doesn't help that *everything* looks like a snake to me right now.

Natalie--back upstairs again after refreshing her own can't find good help these days. Sheesh.