Sam and I headed to Convoy to do an ACME Baseball game late this afternoon....storms had began popping up in Indiana and near Chicago in northeast Illinois....the 0% chance of storms had become 50% by tonight, and now the weather service, in all their usual 20-20 hindsight, was saying the storms might arrive earlier than midnight.
The game started at 6 and no rain or storms in sight, we finish up just after 8PM and a few clouds had moved to the west of Convoy and Crestview High School...nothing seemed big as we changed our gear and headed out of the parking lot about 8:15....nobody seemed concerned, and neither did we... We jump in the car, I flipped on the radio to listen to the Reds game against the Florida Marlins....a few mintues into the drive I looked out the passenger side window...telling Sam.."Look at that!...the sky to the south and west/northwest had become completly black within a matter of minutes....we headed into the outskirts of Van Wert...and stopped at the Brookside Marathon, right near the spot where the deadly tornado of November 2002 had hit....needing fuel I stepped out of the car, just in time to hear the wail of sirens....Sam headed in to get a couple slices of pizza...I look around, thinking to myself "Screw this"...I quickly put $5 in the tank and say to Sam..."let's get the Hell out of here...this doesn't look good"
Instead of taking the Lincoln Highway through to downtown, I circled around the Van Wert ball diamonds at Smiley Park...just in time to hit the crowd leaving in a panic from the Little League games at the site....cars everywhere, here I am cussing them and my luck....across from the park sits the Van Wert Airport...a small cement double runway private air dock...as I look back I say to Sam...."Shit! Look over there...." here it came, a small forming twister....dust and limbs blowing every direction...and cars not knowing where to go....for a moment, I think..."well, I screwed this up, and we may be in for it"...leaves, dirt, cars, limbs, etc, ect...but somehow we managed to work our way through traffic, go right on Shannon Street, and work our way into the Pizza Hut parking lot.....jumping out, I am pretty sure we are in trouble....we go inside, tell the folks in there what is going on outside....we and the establishment survive.
As it turns out....we get reports of 3 or 4 touchdowns, Chatt, north end of Van Wert, and 2 funnel clouds in Putnam County....so far no damage reports, but it was intense. Meanwhile, Sam and I sit down in Pizza Hut...the girls bring us some free pizza, because a couple of folks didn't bother sticking around to get theirs when the storm hit....add a beer for me, a soda for Sam and we head home....trees and shurbs uprooted is what we saw....along with some beautiful cloud formations and a massive rainbow.....
I didn't have any of my cameras...but did get a few 'Sky Shots' with the cell phone.... they are as the storm clears near Rockford, and a Rainbow near Ohio City.....we arrive home safe and sound....a cigar and beer in hand, I send you these shots and head back outside to the confines of my front porch to enjoy.