Just before five last night, daughter Anne sent me a text from home, saying, "Dad, when you come home, enter by the far end of the street, there's a tree down at the corner." And so it was.
Not sure whether there was a tornado or a microburst, but it hit with a wallop, taking down one of the two big water oaks that have stood at the entrance to our street for lo these many years. When we ventured outside to see the damage, we were very glad that no car had been driving along Wekiva Trail as the tree went down, because it could have been disastrous.
As it was, the tree was a big one, and extended all the way across both lanes of the Trail. So no one was getting past it there. On top of that, our end of the half circle that makes up Coble Drive was also impassable.
We looked into the hole where the tree had so recently stood and were amazed that it was just a hole, no roots to speak of. These water oaks have very shallow root systems, nothing to "ground" them if a gust of wind comes along. I think there is a sermon in there somewhere...
The authorities were wonderful and there all evening, the police directing traffic and the fire department hacking away at the old tree till room could be made for the road to be passable again.
Our two dogs, Brantley and Watson, who are never flusterd wiht ordinary storms, must have heard the whole thing. They were quite agitated all evening, spending most of it hiding in the smallest room in the house or the hallway next to it, with worried expressions on both of their faces.