Today’s song is brought to you by the letter “T.” That’s “T,” as in “tornado.” Because that is what has been happening on and off all day in the area where I live: tornado watches, tornado warnings, and thunderstorms aplenty. Right at this second there is thunder booming ominously outside and raindrops pelting across my window. Wait, make that giant hail. My cats do not like this one bit, and neither do I.
When I was young there was a kind of thrill to big storms. My sisters and I would run through our big farmhouse and close all of the windows, make sure that all of our bikes and things were put away, and most importantly try to herd our fifteen (yup, fifteen!) outdoor cats into the garage. Sometimes one or two would take refuge in the shed nearby, but I never felt content unless all fifteen were safely tucked away in the dry garage (which had cat beds and food bowls and a litter box, not just cars, by the by). It was scary but exciting at the same time, gathering everyone and everything indoors, lighting candles, and bracing ourselves for the elements.
Now, however, it’s not as fun. Maybe it’s because I don’t quite have that unflinching childish belief that I am safe as long as I am home, or maybe it’s just that I have some sense of what loss feels like whereas before I did not. I still recall a time several years ago when my older sister and I were shopping in a craft store and a tornado touched down nearby. The power went out, and everyone had to remain in the store and away from the windows. We watched from a distance as a rogue shopping cart flew across the parking lot and crashed into a car. Even at that point, I was mostly concerned about our car, because I just knew that we would be okay.
As I grow older I try to retain a good balance of hope and caution when it comes to natural occurrences. I still enjoy rain on a day when I can stay indoors, and even storms on deliciously spooky evenings (except for when I want to use the internet, in which case it becomes annoying). Tornadoes I pay more attention to, and rightly so, though with cat carriers and my grandmother’s basement close by, I feel okay most of the time. In honor of the powerful weather today I give you one of my favourite songs by one of my favourite bands, “My Tornado” by The Raveonettes, a song that I was oddly listening to so many years ago before we were caught in the craft store. It’s a bit odd to have a theme song for such a memory, but there you go. Enjoy, and stay safe.
*Editor’s Note: Dr. Jo Harding was Helen Hunt’s character in the movie Twister. Remember that little cinematic gem?