The last two days in the happy and content idyll of Rinconland have been very, very wet. We've been getting a lot of rain from tropical storm Fay, as she's made an erratic journey through Florida. Buttloads of rain bands have been parading through the coastal Georgia area -- in particular yesterday. Rain comes down, hard as nails, wind kicks up 30-40 MPH, then 20 minutes later the sun's back out. An hour or two later, more rain and wind. At least two inches of rain have fallen in our neighborhood, as of yesterday.
And early in the evening, along about 7:00, the weather was beautiful, simply beautiful ... a nice 10-15 MPH breeze, and a bit overcast. It couldn't have been more than 75º. Seraphim and I took a good neighborhood walk, breaking in my new "Jolly Time" pedometer -- .988 miles, and 2,277 steps. It was August 21st, but it felt like mid to late October. A sweet hint of Fall just around the corner!
But late last night, as Fay started her westward jog, that put us in the dreaded northeast quadrant, where tornadoes can occur. Those rain bands can hide a nasty twister like a snake in tall weeds. F-0 or F-1 and short-lived, but still damaging. Our weather radio started going off after 1:00 in the morning, with a tornado warning for Jasper and Beaufort Counties in S.C., a cell said to have spawned a waterspout off Hilton Head. It was moving west, with Effingham County in the path.
Sure 'nuff, 20 minutes later, the wx radio tripped again, with a tornado warning for Effingham County. I was still up, and Sera awakened. We were ready to hit the hallway, but luckily the squall was just that. More wind and rain. But you can't be too careful. As the rain fell (and I listened out for the sound of a CSX in search of a set of tracks), we watched some of the Olympics, catching a volleyball game between the U.S. and
Who was that in the pressbox with Bob Costas, and why was he whistling "Sweet Georgia Brown"?
Another thing we noticed were the excessive touchy-feely and butt-patting of the American volleyball teammates. Now I don't feel so bad about not being able to serve that volleyball over the net during 9th grade P.E. (then there was that one time it DID clear the mesh, and everyone stopped, then broke out in applause).
I hate volleyball. If God wanted a ball to stay in the air, He would've given it a set of wings.
Anyway, back to the weather. On the way in this morning, we went through a nice squall around Georgetown. For a minute, the wind was getting awfully Dorothyish. Today, the weather has been hellzapoppin' with tornado warnings. I loaded the EAS* box Wednesday with a fresh roll of paper, and now I'm seeing red. No, not mood. The tape. Red along the edges of the paper indicates it's fixin' to run clear out.
* = EAS stands for (E)mergency (A)lert (S)ystem, the successor to the old EBS ("This is only a test!"). Each station has a box that can automatically choke off audio and insert weather warnings and Levi's Call abducted-child alerts. They're characterized by the three long soundbursts and three short bursts (some of us in the business have come to call 'em "duck farts", because that's what they sound like).
It looks as if we'll be in the northeast line-of-fire for the rest of today, and maybe into tomorrow. Here's hoping Fay will beat it toward Alabama, giving them some much-needed rainfall.
Now if you'll excuse me, I need to find my oars so I can get to my car.
Ciao for niao.