"The Childe...More restless than the swallow in the skies..." -Lord Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Eyelid of the Storm

On Thursday, a tornado touched down near Dexter Michigan only a few miles north of where I work. Fortunately, my workplace was safely out of the twister’s path. I don’t think it came closer than about three miles. Before we lost power, I confirmed the tornado sighting through The Weather Channel's website. Then I grabbed the company's Nikon D7000 camera to take some shots of the storm cell. These pictures were taken right around the time the tornado was on the ground. You can click on the images to see larger versions.

This first view is looking north toward Dexter, Michigan.

Here's another shot. I augmented the clarity and contrast a bit in Photoshop CS5.

This last shot looks southeastward in the direction the storm front was heading. It dropped another tornado later on in Monroe County.

Though no loss of human life has been reported, damage to property in Dexter was extensive. Still, I puzzle over my reaction to the whole event. The storm's impact shocked me, but the mere fact that it was happening did not. As these ominous clouds rolled over, I wasn't the least bit surprised. There was a tinge of resignation. It's that time of year.

Tornadoes struck Denver, Colorado once when I lived there as a child. I was in kindergarten. I didn’t see them, but I have a vivid memory of our teacher frantically huddling us into a hallway with no windows. Those twisters were regarded as freak occurrences. To this day, I experience periodic tornado dreams that hearken back to that terrifying experience in kindergarten. Living in Michigan seems to ensure that I experience one or two real-life scares per year.

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