Tag Archive for 'tornado'

A Stormy Home Owners Meeting…

Last night Jan and I had a little bit of excitement- We had a Home Owners Meeting to attend. We knew because of some issues between a few board members that things would get a bit crazy. We never expected the night we had! We all met in the top level of a 2 story “cabin” across the highway from the neighborhood at Look Up Lodge, a Christian Retreat. When we arrived it was raining a bit and we expected a thunderstorm, About 14 minutes into the meeting, things were starting to get heated among 2 of the board members when the lights went out. Within about 3 minutes the storm got pretty fierce and we decided to evacuate to the lower level of the cabin- as we were trying to file out the door and onto the deck and down the steps, a large tree snapped and landed on the roof- making us all have to run back into the room. That’s when we got hit by a tornado- literally.  We all hit the floor, there were windows all around us- so you couldn’t get away from them. At one point I seriously thought we had lost the roof, stuff was flying all around the room and I kept telling Jan “Cover your head, Cover your head, Cover your head”. Luckily one of the doors sucked open and it pressurized the room. It was quite “exciting”.Once the worst of it passed, and we got outside, there was a transformer down just outside the cabin with wires laying across the path that took us to where the cars were parked. We had to cross the wires- thank goodness they were “dead”. There were also a couple of trees down in that path. We got to where the cars were parked, and it looked like Katrina.  In a 100 yard stretch along the ONLY road out of  the lodge grounds, there were at least 50 trees down. Some of the guys from our neighborhood hiked out (thanks Rednecks Joe and Keith) and got chainsaws and hiked back in- the power company came out and they were working on the outside of the lodge trying to get in, and our guys were working on the inside trying to get out. Friends of ours (Kim and Keith- not rednecks) called us to see if we were OK. When they heard we were trapped, they headed over to the lodge with intents of using their tractor and chainsaw to help clear the road. However the power company wouldn’t let them into the area. I also need to mention Charles, the Greenville County Sheriffs Officer who was in attendance at the meeting (remember I mentioned the issues amongst board members…. ) Anyway, Charles went above and beyond his duty. He stripped off his dress blues and chipped in with Joe, Keith and the Look Up Lodge staff to help cut us out of there. It took about 2.5 hours before we were able to get out. It was such a mess.  I lived in Nebraska all those years and this is the first tornado that actually hit the building I was in- This is Jan’s first experience! We both agree, if we have to experience a tornado- we were glad we did it together!

Jan and I went back over this morning to get pictures- and to tell you the truth, it was quite disappointing compared to the destruction last night. They had cleared a lot of the trees from the sides of the road, but you still get the concept.

Here’s a link to a video from one of our local TV stations. Storms Cause Damage At Upstate Lodge – Greenville News Story – WYFF Greenville. They did a pretty good job with it, except for the fact they made it sound like that little tree in the path was the only thing that kept us from leaving the lodge for 2.5 hours. In reality it was the 50+ trees that were down between the parking lot and the highway that blocked our way.