We went to Sierra’s first soccer game yesterday. Her team is called the Wizards. Cabana Boy is the coach (and I must say he looked so cute in his soccer shorts and his finally-growing-out curls). Sierra looked like she’d been doing this forever. The wind was really kicking though, and blew away her shot at a goal early in the game. The wind kept increasing, and you could see the trees along the side of the fields bending further and further, dust was kicking up, Cabana Boy was holding onto his baseball cap. Hair–even ponytailed hair–was whipping faces, those canvas fold-up chairs in bags would blow over if there wasn’t a butt in them, and finally, when a trash can flew at a crowd of people about midway through the Wizards’ game, they called it and cleared the whole soccer park at 4 pm.

As we headed for our cars, a port-a-potty blew over onto its door, oozing blue liquid, and a little girl ran screaming that her little sister was in there. Luckily she wasn’t. As we were sitting in the traffic leaving the fields, we saw goal thingies blowing over (yeah, I’m a jock, hep to all the terminology). But those things are made of poles and loose-weave nets! How could those blow over? The few people still not in their cars were covering their faces when gusts pelted them with 50mph dust and debris missiles.

On the drive home, we saw traffic lights blowing completely horizontal, and noticed that fireponds had waves crashing on their shores. There were some power outages already, and we saw several trees down. The kids rode home with my parents, and said they saw a gas pump blown over, trailing wires. Of course, this didn’t make nearly the impression on them as the fact that their favorite place to stop for slushies, Thorntons, was not serving slushies due to a power outage.

Pulling into our neighborhood, we saw more trees down, having crashed through fences. Several neighbors’ houses had siding flying off, and our crabapple tree was making alarming noises as it thwacked the downspout. We ran around the back yard, gathering up pool floaties and stuff that were gathered in a drift by the fence, and shoving them in the shed. The tatami-ish rug Cabana Boy had put at the end of the pool was in the pool, along with a flotilla of green leaves whipped from the trees. The umbrella had been left open, so it had carried its table across the garden, and we fought the wind to close it. All secured, we joined the kids inside to watch as the wind kicked it up a few more notches, and we lost power at around 5 pm. “Say hello to Ike, kids!”

Our yard collected several pieces of somebody’s siding. We watched as more siding was whipped off our neighbors’ house and their flag pole bent and finally gave it up. We watched as the woman across the street, who has never walked her dog that we’ve ever seen in the past four years, proceeded to go outside and walk her dog, because, you know, it was such a lovely day for a stroll. The tree next door went down, narrowly missing the front corner of their garage, and they had to chop the rest of it down as it was splintered and threatening to fall on the house (or ours). Dad helped move it off their driveway.

My parents went home, across the street, and while Dad was out back looking at the damage to their fence from a Bradford pear, the other Bradford pear came crashing down, smashing the fence. Thank God he was standing on the other side of the first downed tree, or he would have been under it. We all hunkered down inside with candles, and realized that we don’t have a transistor radio with batteries. I went out to the car at around 7 pm and heard a radio announcer say that we had sustained winds of 40-50 mph with 70 mph gusts. The wind advisory was to last until 9 pm, but I don’t think it actually lasted that long.

This morning, all is mostly back to normal. I don’t think we personally sustained any damage other than some flapping shingles on our roofs, and Mom and Dad’s fence. The kids don’t have school today, because a lot of the schools in their district still don’t have power. Poor deprived children! Our power must’ve come back sometime last night, so I was happy to get my coffee fix this morning, and not to have the prospect of the “I’m bored!” litany all day.

Okay, workie workie time! With kids!

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