Chant and Polyphony for Tornado Siren and Alert Tones

It is mid-morning, and quiet, and growing hot again. It is good to be home with the air conditioner’s hum and the snores of a contented dog harmonizing with the low buzz of the mower as Hubby tries to tame the prairie restoration that is our lawn.

While Oakley had his sleepover camp adventures–exploring a lake’s edge, making friends with a kitty, playing with a couple of friends from day care–Hubby and I made the trip north to the Bristol Renaissance Faire for badly needed break from common reality.

It began as any other trip did, moderate Saturday traffic, clear weather, then we hit very slowed traffic ten miles south of the exits for a mega-amusement park, a mega-outlet mall, and a mega-water park resort. There had been one huge accident still under investigation compounded by cleanup from several smaller fender-benders likely caused by other drivers messing with their phones or trying to figure out what happened. The automotive carnage forced traffic into two lanes instead of the usual four, hence the thickness.

Fine. We arrived unscathed. Parked in a spot on the high side of the lot, went inside the magic gates to our happy place.

A few clouds gathered, and the air felt a tad soupy. Saw a couple of the comedy acts, grabbed lunch. Music? Too many good acts to choose from so we would just see how the day unfolded.

More clouds gathered, and the air felt as if rice or noodles had been added. We went to the Nobles’ Glade, the shady part at the back of the grounds where Queen Elizabeth I holds court. They were enjoying their lunch to the tunes of a vocal group performing Celtic tunes.

And then the clouds congealed, and the air grew as gloppy as canned cream of mushroom soup, and Her Majesty gave the command for the servants to get the carpets rolled up and for all to take shelter. Well, the possibility of rain had been in the weather reports for a few days, so no surprise there.

Hubby and I walked up the lane to get cookies at the bakeshop. The sprinkles started, then strengthened into a storm. We dove into a game and bookstore along with about two dozen others. Watched a game involving the construction of castles, chatted with our fellows as the rain dropped straight from the sky like a blanket getting dropped onto a bed.

Not a problem. Having too much fun to get too upset. A couple of other patrons made a run for the tavern across the street.

The wind shifted. The customers’ phones, the weather radio, and the tornado siren let loose with a collective wail. We were under watches for everything this side of a blizzard. We could do nothing but wait it out. A shrug, a pause to move the table from beneath the leaky part of the roof, and the party continued.

After an intense forty five minutes, the storm tapered off. We decided to stay, but Hubby wanted to check the truck. It took a lot longer than expected, and as I looked for him from my spot at the gate, I looked straight ahead. The parking area at the bottom of the hill was flooded, trapping several cars.

Even though we’d had a good spot, the faire’s streets had been trashed out, forming rivers with slick footing in the relatively dry places. We decided that heading home might not be a bad idea.

We passed a lot of water on the pavement; we passed another accident. Still, a smoother trip than the northward trek. A stop for Chinese takeout, and we were done for the day, but not before we began the laying of tentative plans for another trip.

Hubby negotiates with the prairie plants. I picked Oakley up from sleepover camp, checked messages.

We make our tiny tenuous steps into common reality today. We bide our time until we can leap into the other one.


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