Several interesting things happened on our ride home from Brian's dad's last evening. The first, was this thing, out in the field, what was it? As we got even with it, we realized it was a crane (the bird type), in the middle of a field of soy. ?!?! A bit later we spotted some deer. Those we are use to spotting, well at least we are unless the guys are actually out hunting for them.
We stopped at the MickeyD's in Wayland. "What use to be there?" we questioned each other, about the now empty lot next to it. Neither one of us was sure. Turned out, both of us had an idea, but didn't share it because it couldn't have possibly been that, right?! We were right in our unspoken guesses. They had completely taken out the Speedway station. The one that had at least three cars at it, no matter what time of day or night you passed by. 'If it was always so busy, why in the world would they take it out' we questioned. According to the sign on the front of the fencing, a new one would be replacing the old one soon. "Awww.....".
As we were approaching the 54th Street exit off the highway, Brian pointed to two buildings along the side. I wondered why they were being taken apart that-a-way. Certainly not the usual way to demolish a building. Turned out that it was due to them first being victims of the recent tornado. The tornado itself had been the slightest of blips on the radar screen, and it was gone the second time the scanner passed over that area, so they hadn't rung any alarms. But it had definitely been a tornado. The proof is in the evidence it left behind. Now true, compared to lots of tornado destruction paths you see on the national news broadcasts, this one didn't do much. But it did enough.
Brian got off at the exit and drove me around to see the spots where it had caused havoc, lifted up, then dropped lower again. I said "OH MY WORD !!!" a whole lot during our drive. I had seen some pictures of the damage on line. In-fact, one of my brothers had stopped by the house he use to live in in that area, introduced himself to the current owners, and gotten permission to enter the property and take pictures. We had lived there with him for seven months after our house fire, so I knew the area. Oh my word is it not the same looking now!! And it's not because of the years which have passed since we lived there. The evidence to the difference is in all of the tree stumps which now show where all of the huge, wondrously shady trees use to stand between him and the houses on the street behind him, houses that we had forgot were back there because you couldn't really see them due to the trees. The evidence was in there no longer being a three season porch on the back of my brothers old house, it had literally been ripped off. The evidence is also in how many homes have tarps covering parts of their roofs, or are missing parts of their garages or houses. The evidence is in the insulation caught way up in the trees by and in, what use to be a beautiful wooded park. While we weren't able to access the park itself, we could see for quite a distance, and all we saw were toppled over trees. Not sure if a single one was left untouched. The owners of one house we passed, were installing an electric meter to the side of their house. Others were working on framing in sections. It was just all too surreal.Brian then treated me to Dairy Queen :-] Their waffle cone turtle sundae is good! yup, yup, yup! We were sitting on the bench, enjoying the wonderful evening air, enjoying watching people. Two pretty girls in their twenties were walking our direction, when this moped went down the street, with the helmet-less male driver standing straight up on the pedals, arms spread wide. We laughed. The girls laughed. Brian inquired if they'd been impressed. They exchanged a look, looked at us again, then their laughter became kind of the embarrassed type. My puzzlement must have registered on my face, because one of the girls walked over, put her hand on my knee, leaned in and asked, "you don't recognize us do you?". Awkward. "You do look familiar, but I don't know from where." They laughed joyously. I was all the more confused. Then (of their own accord) they told me their names, twice. Finally it dawned on me, they were my cousins! Well technically, my cousins daughters, making them my second cousins. But it was them!! They were out for a walk enjoying the evening air. They said they had already passed us once and had been quite sure it was us.... . It was good to see them! One of them has two kids and they said that their sister is due for her third any day now. I had no idea any of them lived any wheres near us. We laughed. We hugged. What a neat surprise in my evening! :-]