A touchdown is generally a good thing when it comes to spacecraft and airplanes, though in the case of airplanes, that initial touch can sure get the adrenaline going, especially when the plane bounces and then touches down yet again. A touchdown in football is a good thing for the one making the goal and a not-so-good thing for the opposite team. (At least, that’s my understanding of the game, though a touchdown could mean something else for all I know since my knowledge of football is limited to movies like The Replacements, Necessary Roughness, Rudy, and Radio.)

A touchdown when it comes to weather is something entirely different.

Last night, the tornado sirens sounded as they sometimes do. Normally I don’t worry because the familiar signs of an impending tornado are often absent, especially the eerie green skies. Last night, however, the ambient light was a sickly yellow-green. I waited to hear the screaming winds that often herald a touchdown, but all I could hear was the wind in the trees and the rain pounding against the windows. (Luckily no hail, though some areas around here did get bombarded.)

Since I didn’t want to go down into the basement — I’ve lost whatever talent for stairs I once had and so I was more afraid of falling than I was of the storm — I brushed my teeth. It sounds silly, doesn’t it? But the bathroom, which has no window, is the safest place next to the basement, and I wasn’t scared enough to huddle on the floor of the shower. So I brushed my teeth.

And the storm passed. Well, except for that one thing — a sheriff’s deputy got a video of a tornado touching down right outside of town.

Apparently, the cloud touched down for a few seconds, but there was no damage and no one was hurt.

This morning, I went outside and looked askance at Mother Nature. The crone gave me an innocent look as if to say, “What? Did I do something wrong?” All was still (except for those ubiquitous doves and their incessant call, “What-todo, what-todo.”). The sun shone with a golden light, the skies were bright blue, and the only indication of a storm was the standing water in the gutters where the drainage is especially poor.

Clouds are starting to roll in again, which is to be expected during monsoon season. (Normally, the winds in Colorado come from the west or northwest, but during the summer, they shift and come from the south and southwest and bring moisture and afternoon storms from the gulfs.) We can use the rain since this area is in extreme drought, but please, hold the tornadoes.

Things are bad enough — we don’t need any touchdowns around here.


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator

4 Responses to “Touchdown”

  1. Estragon Says:

    Tornadoes aren’t common here, but not uncommon either. A few years back, one passed through a treed area a bit to the north. Driving through the area a few weeks later, I saw where the path of the tornado intersected with the road. There was scar in the bush about 75′ wide in which pretty much every living thing had been destroyed.

    What struck me is that the bush just a foot or two either side of the devastation was carrying on as if nothing had happened. If anything, some pioneer species were in the early stages of thriving. There was nothing special about the life in the path of devastation, or about that in the survival zone. It just was what it was, and will be what it will be, whether we like it or not. So why not brush your teeth?

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I hadn’t thought of the experience like that, but when it comes to tornadoes as well as most of not all of life, it is what it is and no amount of mental pushing will keep it from doing what it will do. Part of my mind says we should be able to control such things if we could only tap into the right attitude (for lack of a better word) but so far, I’ve never found a way to control anything. All I know is that pushing against things does nothing. At least carrying on as if nothing is happening creates a feeling of life as usual.

  2. Judy Galyon Says:

    Glad you are ok & all is well in your area! Hope you get se “nice” rain!

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