Oh hail!

What a storm! I’m glad I missed it. I was a to work yesterday when I got a message from my mother telling me that hail broke out the window to my bedroom. Father boarded it up, since I couldn’t really do anything about it while I was an hour away. When I got home, the house looked a little worse for wear, especially the trees. Small branches and leaves littered the street and the yard.

I didn’t have much time to deal with the catastrophe of the broken pane since my nephew was celebrating his First Communion, and my the time I got home the sun had set and I just went to bed. Today, I needed to deal with the gaping hole on the wall.

I bought a roll of plastic and furring strips to keep the wind and rain out. My brother helped me take out the broken window, which is no easy feat. The trim around the window was already rotten, and my plan has been to replace them when I could, so the fact that the hail broke the window isn’t that big a deal. My main concern, as I inspected the framing, was that the outside wall and the frame be free of rot, which I’m happy to report it is.

I covered the window frame with plastic before covering it with plywood. Since the window is gone, we’re having to up the exterior project up. The back of the house, for whatever reason, has stucco which needs to be removed. As long as that’s happening, my other window will need to be removed, along with all the windows on the south side of the house which also sustained damage during the storm, but didn’t shatter as my south side window.

We’ll remove the stucco, ensure the walls are clean and free of rot, use a house wrap, then install the new windows and trim before installing new siding. It’s a lot of work, a job that we had planned on completing on one fine someday, but looks like Mother Nature decided to expedite the work. So be it!

Luckily, we have most of the siding already. It’s going to be a big job, and it’ll get rather expensive, but it needs to be done. For the short-term I’ll be down a window, but I’m fine with that. As long as the elements don’t enter the room, I can slum it for a while. The other issue I have to deal with is what to do with my truck that we worked on last year and painted. The hail dented the heck out of it! That, I’ll admit, has me a little more upset, but that’s a topic for another time.

Water from the heavens

And I thought we were in the middle of a severe drought. It’s been crazy wicked seeing the amount of rain that has fallen in recent weeks. The dry playa lake behind the house is filling up, creating a water hazard that will likely swallow up many golf balls once the backyard dries up enough to walk on. As I write this, I can hear the quite rumbling of thunder approaching, and with it more glorious rain.

A couple of weeks ago, the entire panhandle of Texas was a parched wasteland, giving credence to the name of Amarillo, which is Spanish for yellow. We had fire warnings everyday, with strong winds, abysmally low humidity levels, and endless tracks of dry tinder waiting for a spark to go up in flames.

Today everything is green and life has returned to the plains of Texas. I hope area lakes are recharging, and I know the area farmers are pleased with the rain. The Ogallala Aquifer is getting a temporary reprieve, though I wish there were a way for it to recharge as well.

The round of storms have been a bit treacherous. On Friday, as I drove home from work, I passed a horrible accident on I-27, which closed the northbound lane. An 18-wheeler was on its side, taking up the whole lane closing up the northbound lane and reducing the southbound side down to one lane. I’m not sure if straight-line winds got it, or if the sleek roads caused the driver to lose control, but all I know is that I’ve never seen so many first responders on the interstate so close to home.

Saturday night, I didn’t even make it home. I ended up staying the night at a friends house. I had to buy an emergency supply of toiletries and a new shirt so I could make it to work looking somewhat put together. As soon as I got home, my jeans came off and a clean pair of shorts went on. My jeans went straight into the washer.

But I’m not complaining. I’m enjoying the sound of rain. Beats the sound of wind, and the dust pelting everything in sight. I don’t know if you’ve ever been in the middle of a dirt devil, but the dirt actually hurts. It’s very much like being in a sandblaster in the middle of the yard.

All we have to worry about is the flash flooding, hail, lightning, and the possibility of tornados. Oh, also with all the rain, we are suffering the dreaded return of the mosquito. Death by a million vampiric pests.

But really, I’m not complaining. I’m enjoying the sound of the rain as it beats relentlessly against the windows even as I write this. The thunder is booming, but at least the power is on. The radar shows an awesome storm overhead, but there are no severe storm warnings, at least not yet.

All I’m hoping for is that it dries up a bit on Tuesday. I have an appointment scheduled with the auto glass company, and I’m taking my truck in to have a windshield installed. Once it’s in, I don’t care if it starts up again. Just a few hours, please!

For now, I think I will get off and enjoy the light show through the windows. I’m getting back in bed and drift off to the symphony of music mother nature is gifting us right now. I just hope it doesn’t gift me a tree limb though the window, then I really will start to complain.