— Edward Readicker-Henderson
teach us how short our time is; let us know it in the depth of our soul…
show us how precious each day is; teach us to be fully here.
and let the work of our hands prosper, for our little while. [ps. 98 — stephen mitchell]
oh, how i love this time of year. oklahoma doesn’t always get great autumns. sometimes it’s far too windy or much too wet, and sometimes the weather seems to switch from summer heat to winter cold in a matter of a week. but this autumn has been beautiful. the leaves on the trees are spectacular colors, the weather has cooled just enough.
the coming of autumn reminds me to live. it reminds me that things change, and that things that are here one day may not be here the next. so it reminds me to love. and things like football parties and friends gathering on the patio and holidays with family give me the perfect opportunity to do so.
— Terence (via Maya Angelou)
What a day it has been. My pilot friend (who is also a meteorological nerd on the side) told me that there was a PDS warning issued. I had no idea what that meant. Turns out, it means “particularly dangerous situation.” Good to know.
The local meteorologists began their predictions of doom just after noon. I spent my day glued to the television, waiting for the one particular storm that would barrel through my tiny farm town. The actual, immediate threat came around 6:00 this evening, when I, along with my three children and the entire population of Harrah decided it was time to pile ourselves into the old bomb shelter at the elementary school. I expected there to be a few dozen people there, not the few hundred smelly, warm people which I found crowded into the concrete room.
My children were wonderful. They were quiet and well-behaved, staying right by my side the entire time, entertained by a boy with a guinea pig and a few other peoples’ beloved pets (which, by the way, were expressly forbid on the sign). We emerged 20 minutes later into a town littered with leaves and bits of tree limbs and other debris. We did not incur any significant damage. The worst I saw was my neighbor, Al-the-tomato-man’s, tree blown over.
Now, I’m just exhausted. The heightened expectancy carried throughout the day and the brief rush of adrenaline getting the children to the storm shelter were enough to make me want to take a nap. But instead the children needed dinner and the house needed to be picked up. I’m finally sitting down – a glass of wine, some incense. I tried to avoid turning on the television, not knowing how much more I could take, but Anderson Cooper’s tweets about the Joplin devastation sucked me in.
Here’s hoping tomorrow will be much more peaceful.