Chuck is working three hours away. I am home alone gleefully watching "Daddy Long Legs" on Netflix and happened to glance at the weather radar on my phone to see a long storm system reaching from South Dakota to Canada bearing down on Tioga. This big guy was showing hail, strong winds and super heavy rains with lightning. It was one long, solid band of nasty weather beast. This was about 6:30pm. I started talking to God about it, a lot.
I went to get the weather radio to find it was left on and the batteries were dead. But I live with Chuck Vaughn and we always have batteries! I put them in and turned on the radio to hear the guy saying a severe thunderstorm warning was in effect in Williams County. I am in Williams County! As he spoke he was saying something about damaging winds in excess of 60mph and quarter sized hail and for people to take cover.
I live in an RV and have no covered parking for my brand new car.
I looked at the radar again and there were spots where the storm was breaking apart. This could be good if it broke up by the lake and went south of me, that happens. It was now after seven pm and the guy was still talking about taking cover and the hail would do major damage to cars and windows. I sat in a chair near by my big window facing west, the storm was still 40-50 miles away but you could see that is was getting darker. Remember the sun doesn't set until 9:30pm here. However there was, low on the horizon an area that looked a bit lighter. Will it pass me?
Then the guy on the radio says there is a tornado watch for Billings County, North Dakota. I looked at my phone radar and there it was. A red lined area west of Dickenson were my husband is working! Turn out the lights the party's over. I grabbed the stuff that Chuck and I had planned to take for just such a situation and decided I was not going to sit in the RV and wait for hail to wreck my car and strong winds blow over my trailer with me and Cooper sitting there.
I loaded the car, Cooper hopped in and I started to drive.
Nearby is a big truck stop with covered bays so that would be my destination when the hail came-but first I wanted to look at the storm myself. A quick radar glance showed the breaking up at the lake had happened but one large cell looked like it was headed for Tioga. I called my sister Mary while I drove around the town trying to get a vantage point for the storm. There was light on both sides of what looked like a really wide rain band. Mary was on her computer looking up the different radars to see if she could tell what it might be doing. Just her calm voice and information slowed my crazy heartbeat and cleared my scattered mind. She was doing just what I needed and I was getting myself under control. She was being my Chuck, the voice of reason and calm.
We talked non-stop for about twenty minutes. She told me it looked like it was breaking up and clearing some and would probably move just north of Tioga. By this time it was getting really dark, but there was lightning flashing brilliantly and rain starting fall so I told her I was going home and thanked her for her comfort. She had no idea how much I needed her. By the time I got back it was raining really good, no hail was falling, the winds were very light and Cooper and I settled down.
It is past us now, to the north. The air is cool and smells fresh. Thank you God for watching over it all.