The Unseen Tornado- Workamping in Tornado Alley

I couldn’t believe it! It was another Tornado Watch in the area- and yet again nobody seemed to even skip a beat.


The employees and monthly guests at the Campground, just went about their days as if it was sunny with a slight chance of rain…. But it wasn’t. The sky was getting darker and darker by the minute- and everyone’s phones were blaring with the emergency weather alerts! I was nervous but tried my best to make it through the rest of my day without showing too much panic.

After going home for the night, our family ate a nice casual dinner as usual then settled down into bed for the night. The sky had cleared and the weatherman only called for light rain and mild wind…

4 hours later

After sleeping soundly for about 4 hours, Antwon and I jumped out of bed at the sound of thunder! Looking stunned and staring at each other in disbelief we immediately got up. We jumped out of bed! I ran to the window and saw a horrifying sight! The trees were bending from left to right, the rain was pummeling down… “Oh! No- it’s a tornado” I said. Antwon was no longer in the room- he ran into the bedroom to check on the kids (or so I thought!)

I went into the kitchen to get the computer. I prayed Antwon would be able to get the kids up and dressed, so we could go to the safe place, by the time the radar-loaded on my screen. OMG! I thought. It was inevitable! A tornado was bound to happen eventually! There was a watch every day- eventually one would touch down!

I quickly dressed while still in the bathroom, then came bursting through the door trying desperately to get my jacket and shoes on, without tripping and smashing my face on the ground… I ran back into the kids’ room- WAIT! What’s going on? I busted into my bedroom, to ask what was happening…. Antwon was asleep, cuddled up and snoring in the bed!!!

I felt so confused and a little silly. Was this for real? Why was he back in the bed? I took a deep breathe then checked the weather once more- still only light rain. I checked outside- still crazy weather that looked like a tornado. I threw her hands up, undressed and got back in the bed. I said another prayer- put it in God’s hands- and went back to sleep!

4 hours later

I woke up and got dressed for work! What a night! Surely I didn’t imagine that weather. It was real- that really happened! I knew it did.  I hopped on my golf cart and drove down the path from our onsite cottage to the front office to open the campground store for the day. As I did I notice a few small branches had fallen… No big deal.  Then I turned onto the main driveway for the campground and realized the storm did happen! And it was a TORNADO!

The horses’ shelters had been picked up and flung over the 4-foot fence, the road, and onto our side of the pasture! The fence was broken in two very large places, and the other shelter was shattered! OMG!

I parked the golf cart and got out to try to patch the fence! (The Campground is right off the highway. The horses could have easily walked onto the freeway- if they weren’t so busy eating the grass!) I picked up all the broken pieces of the shelter and built a makeshift wall to block them in. Being curious the horses started to nudge her wall! So I backed up the golf cart and wedged it up against the fence. I called Antwon, and when he arrived he could hardly believe what he saw!

Had there really been a tornado? Did they really sleep through it?
No time for Q&A, there was a huge piece of the fence down on the other side- and since the front gate had also been damaged in the storm (it tried to pick it up, which bent all the closing hinges- making it inoperable), they couldn’t close it to keep the horse inside the park! We had a lot of work to do. It was only 7 am- I was planning on going in early to get a head start on some items I had been putting off, so no other staff was on the property. We called the head maintenance man, who said he’d be right over- but it was still a good 30 mins of chaos before even the first guest would drive by.
Overall it was a long day of fixing fences and explaining what happened- but the end result was that only the people who were inside the park agreed there was a tornado. We all agreed there were crazy strong winds, lots of rain, and that there must have been some sort of swirling going on to lift the horse houses up and throw them over the fences.

The rest of the town knew nothing more than what the weatherman predicted! How’s that for Texas Weather?

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