25 August, 2007

Can You Say "Storm"

Thursday I was having lunch up in Moline, Illinois with two of my friends who are also in the ministry. As we were eating, my phone rings and it is my daughter, telling me (and I quote) "Dad, it's raining and a branch fell and hit the house." OK, tree branches quite frequently fall around our house, so this is no big deal. I ask her if everything was ok; she said that it was, except it was getting windy. About that time, it began raining where we were, about 40 miles from Galesburg, and it was a little windy, so I don't think too much about it. However, my friend David looks up the weather on his phone (which has Internet) and he says, "Galesburg is getting pounded." I still did not worry about it, since the kids said things were ok at home.

About 2 hours later, as I approach Galesburg, traffic on the Interstate came to a complete stop about 2 miles out of Galesburg. After about 20 minutes, I was able to work my way off the road and drove the last part off the shoulder of the road to my exit. As I get there, I hear two trucks are over-turned. I'm still not getting it.
A minute later, I began to get it. As
I got off the highway to come into town, it began to look like bombs had been dropped on the town. There were trees down all over the place. Signs were busted out, wires down and seriously, it looked like a war zone. I got home, and my street was literally full of trees down, tree limbs and I'm beginning to think, "Are my kids safe? Is my home OK?" Long story short, we are all ok. My house is ok. We had some close calls. A huge part of a tree fell off and somehow landed between two of our cars, barely missing them both. The "branch" that hit my house was about 35 feet long. But the house is ok. Many of my neighbors were not so lucky, as you will notice in the pictures I am putting on here. We went without power for over 30 hours, but otherwise, we are fine.

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