Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

Stormy Weather


The stormy weather we’ve been having in Okieland isn’t the same as Lena’s song, but it’s disturbing just the same.

Tornados have swept away parts of Moore and we’ve had tornado warning several days in a row. No! Fun! I even went to the cellar my folks had dug when I was a kid. (I usually plan to go under my stairs in case one hits.)

I don’t remember that kind of storm before we moved to C-Town when I was little. I have a slight memory of coming out of a basement once, but barely. I remember really well when Dad had some of the guys who worked on the cable tool rig dig the C-Town cellar.  By hand!

I watched the progress closely (of course.) I’d look down into that hole and thought it was huge! When it was finally finished and concreted, I even went down and tap danced a few steps. (The echo was great!)

Almost immediately, it started leaking water (our part of Okieland has a high water table) so from then on, there about a foot of water standing there. The fact that Dad didn’t get around to putting a door on it (until years and years later) didn’t help any. LOL. We had a great time “walking the tight rope” along the edge of that opening.

Once Granddad caught some catfish and put them down in the cellar. I had visions of nests of snakes living there, and even a few nightmares that centered around it.

Finally though, Sister Debbie moved into Grandmother’s house and decided it was time to make the cellar usable. She had the open window closed up, added a vent and a sump pump. Now the cellar is clean with no critters (except a few spiders) and Deb always makes sure there are plenty of snacks and games to entertain the kiddies who go down.

969748_666217840062234_602725260_n     Pretending we’re monkeys.

The weird thing about that cellar is, I think all the water over the years caused it to shrink! I didn’t know cement could shrink like that, but it’s not nearly as big as it was back in the beginning.

Where do you go during a tornado? Bathtub? Cellar? Or are you like so many of the men I know who go out to the porch and watch?


Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

5 thoughts on “Stormy Weather

  1. Like so many of the men you know (and probably partially due to all the men in my life)… I have the tendency to go out on the porch and watch the weather. I just LOVE to watch the storms roll in!! The smell of the storm, the lighting flashing and the thunder booming… WOW!! 🙂
    We actually don’t get a lot of tornadoes where I live — unlike central OK — so they’ve never really caused me too much personal concern. I’ve only been in a cellar once in my entire life and I’ve never taken shelter from a storm of any kind. 😉

    • I love storms and rain, too! (I knew we could be friends.) To be very honest, I tend to stay on the porch and watch, too (I have a slight problem with close spaces) but when a twister is headed right toward me, I get a little skittish. Or a lot.
      For as long as I’ve lived in C-Town, we’ve never had a ‘nado. Some people say it’s the geography (rolling hills and a river that bends around the town) others say it’s an old Indian thing.
      I’m not sure why it is because Terlton (10 miles away) Old ‘Ford (18 miles away) and Drumright (25 miles away) and even the house I live in, which is outside of C-Town about 11 miles and on the lake, have all been hit hard in the past. (The house I live in was nearly destroyed in 1991, several years before I bought it.)
      Gah, this is practically a blog in itself. 🙂 Glad you don’t have ‘nado worries. I’ll bet you have other ones, though.
      Thanks for visiting my Small Town World!

      • Yeah, I’m not too fond of close spaces either. And we would need a pretty big cellar/shelter to fit my family since there would be at least 7-8 people in it.
        You’re up by Tulsa, then… I live near Addington, Comanche, Duncan — about 1 hour south west of Lawton. We do get tornadoes here (had a few last month and actually heard the sirens go off when I was in the library) just not near our house. A man from my church had one touch down briefly about 300 yards from his house! If that was normal/expected I would be a LOT more likely to take shelter!
        My northern relatives (in MI) think we’re insane to actally WANT to live here, but I can’t even imagine wanting to live anywhere else. 🙂

        • Near Duncan? G-Man and I came close to buying a pharmacy there, once. (God wanted us in Pryor Creek instead.) 🙂
          Know any Clinginsmiths in that part of the world? One of my cousins is married to a Clinginsmith from Duncan. They’re good people!
          Funny, you say you can’t imagine living anywhere else. I just wrote in my WIP that my heroine’s mother believed, “God gave Oklahoma tornados so people wouldn’t confuse it with heaven.” LOL.
          I’m so glad to have met you!

          • Yes, Duncan is the closest “big” town near us (about 20 min away). We go to church there and my dad & brothers work there. And the closest Wal Mart is there & we all know how important THAT is! LOL! 😉
            That name doesn’t sound familiar. I’ll have to mention it to my mom…
            Haha! That’s too funny! I’d rather have tornadoes than live on the coast & deal with hurricanes…
            Thanks! Glad to have met you too! 🙂

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