A couple of weeks ago my boyfriend came to VA to visit me for the weekend. There was a dirt track race (he LOVES racing) going on in a nearby town so we were going to spend our weekend there. Friday night we headed to the track for the qualifying and heat races. I had underestimated the frigid affects of the wind and nearly froze my butt off. However, we made the most of the night and watched some decent racing.
The main event was supposed to happen the next day but due to bad weather the race ended up being delayed and moved to Sunday afternoon.
Since the race was delayed we decided to drive to Williamsburg to have dinner with my roommate Addy and her boyfriend. The heavily anticipated bad weather had yet to show its ugly head and as we drove to Williamsburg under a cloudy but rainless sky the decision to postpone seemed premature. However, we were no sooner being seated at Green Leafe restaurant when all hell broke loose.
Let me take time out for a moment to mention that I HATE storms. Like am terrified of storms. Like want to climb under a bed, curl up in a ball, and cry when it storms.
It wasn’t until our waitress mentioned that a tornado had gone through Richmond, VA that we began to worry. But even then we didn’t understand the magnitude of what we were about to encounter. We spent an extra 30-40 minutes at the restaurant waiting on the rain to clear. Finally, seeing a lapse in the downpour, we made a mad dash for the car.
Despite the late night hour (it was only like 9 p.m. but that's late for me!) it seemed like we were driving through daylight as the sky was illuminated with lightning bolt after lightning bolt. As we made the hour drive back (I cried through most of that hour drive) to our hotel, in Gloucester, the storm damage became more extreme. As we reached the city limits there were obvious power outages, downed power lines, areas of forest that were completely leveled, and emergency personnel everywhere. It wasn’t until we got back to the hotel and turned on the t.v. that we realized that a tornado had indeed hit that area as well. Thanks be to God that we spent the extra time at the restaurant waiting for the rain to clear or we would have been in the heart of the storm.
The next day as we drove around the little town we saw the magnitude of the storm. A local school had been almost completely destroyed, buses had been ripped apart by the tornado, homes were damaged, trees were leveled, etc. There were 4 confirmed deaths and dozens others were injured. My heart goes out to the families affected by the storm. I'm so very thankful that God kept us at the restaurant for long enough that we missed the most severe parts of the storm.