Sunday, March 12, 2006

Ok, that was a little freaky

Well, it sounds like we just narrowly missed a tornado this evening. We had the police scanner going, which is generally much more reliable than watching the TV as far as spotting storms and all that stuff. We heard reports of a tornado touching down west of Gentry heading straight for downtown. And then a few minutes later, reports of a tornado touching down east of Decatur, which would basically be heading right for Bentonville.

The Bride was getting a little nervous, so we had some pillows and blankets down in the hallway. Just as I got 'em put down, the rain started picking up outside, accompanying the 30 mph winds that had been gusting for a while. Next thing I know, I start hearing some serious THUDS outside, and I open the front door to see some small pieces of hail falling down. I see my neighbors across the street in their doorway, waving over to us, just as I'm about to step outside and grab a little pellet of hail. Right as I'm about to do that, I see pieces of hail flying sideways and notice that a few of 'em are bigger. I jump back up onto the porch and into the doorway, and just as I do, there's a monstrous thud right in front of me behind the bushes.

This baby is what I picked up. Freaking nuts. I've seen some hail before, and its mostly round and smooth, albeit irregularly shaped. This stuff was flat on the bottom and spiky across the top. Nuts! Thankfully for my truck that isn't paid for yet, the big stuff fell for less than a minute before it petered out. The wind got really crazy for a few minutes here in downtown Bentonville, but I think we missed the worst of it. I heard rumors of tornadoes touching down near Centerton and north of Bentonville, but here was o.k.

We never really had to duck in the hallway or anything. I'm listening to a caller of KNWA right now talking about seeing a tornado drag right across the Bentonville Municipal Airport. I've heard reports on the scanner of hangars being ripped open and stuff already, so that may be the honest truth.

I had a great post planned for tonight about the Bentonville General Planning process, but that sort of got lost in the shuffle with the storm and all. Hopefully I'll get to it tomorrow...