I was going to write a filler post today, but then something interesting happened:
We got a tornado warning. A severe tornado warning.
And suddenly my filler post didn’t matter so much any more. There is nothing as scary and exhilarating as watching a storm bearing down on your location. This one was no exception. Though I have not heard yet if there have been any downspouts confirmed, I can assure you that the clouds were doing the twist right over central Edmonton. The flag on the pole, though sodden, was flapping from the south wind. The clouds directly above it were moving in from the north fast. There was a wall of water obliterating my view of the river, and I watched as it swallowed up the valley until it hit me. I couldn’t see the WEM first, then I lost the Groat Road bridge, and then suddenly it was on us.
It was raining so heavily that for a moment I even lost Jasper Avenue. And in that moment, the sky lit up pink and purple and the lightning streaked through it. I was blinded and deafened. The sound rattled the windows hard. Wherever it hit, it was close. Really close.
The hail came after that, white marbles bouncing off the concrete building with a distinct ping. They stopped traffic for a moment as no one could see where they were going. The buses waited at their stops so the commuters wouldn’t have to get off into the pelting ice.
Just as suddenly, it was gone. The sky lightened, and for a moment I could see my whole view of the valley again. The flag stopped dancing.
Then the rain switched direction, and suddenly the wall of water was advancing on me again. The flag began to point south, but the southern clouds were moving steadfastly north. Once more, the hail pounded down and the street lights came on in the middle of the afternoon. Traffic ground to a halt.
The storm is slowly lifting now, moving north, taking the hail, thunder and lightning with it and leaving behind a trail of rain. It is expected to rain now until tomorrow. There are patches of blue sky sprinkled amongst the clouds now, which makes the whole experience seem surreal. My only hope is that this blue sky is a promise of what is to come, and not the eye of a much, much larger storm.