I’m not really sure how much to tell you about this morning. You’re going to think I’m exaggerating. But, things that pass for “normal” at my parents’ house can sound very strange to everybody else.
My father, who just had surgery for a torn rotator cuff and was at the hospital twice yesterday for various reasons, awoke this morning with a new sense of purpose – we must prepare for the approaching thunderstorms.
Truth be told, my parents do live in a single-wide trailer in a tornado alley section of middle Tennessee. And tornadoes have been on a terror lately. However, disaster preparedness is something my father always loves to do, especially when he has a crew as big as mine to help.
I was still on my first cup of coffee when Daddy called a storm preparation meeting. Various jobs were handed out.
The storm shelter needed to be swept and vacuumed out. The emergency bag and N.O.A.A. radio needed to be found.
I needed to walk the property with my father, holding into the back of his belt in order to stabilize him and keep him from falling on his hurt shoulder, which is in a rigged-up sling.
For two hours, we traversed the hills in this way, checking the spring house, deciding if the water level in the tank was high enough, then testing the water’s pH and adding chlorine. We also looked in on a hen whose chicks started hatching this morning.
Now, I’m at Fox’s Grocery to get saltine crackers and ice for my father’s cold therapy machine. I’m planning to keep some ice in reserve for my personal storm prep — a pitcher of sangria. The winds are kicking up a little, and I’ve been gone far too long on this errand.
If a tornado does hit, you know where we’ll be — riding it out in my parents’ storm shelter with saltines and sangria.
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