Huff and Puff
I was taking my little boy out to the car on our way to day care. I had set him down and was opening the doors of our little rental car (long story) when up on the rooftop there arose such a clatter. A great many acorns and small branches were pattering on the roof of the doorless garage (really more of a carport) in which we stood. Then, as I watched, forty feet away back at the rear wall of our home two of our large plastic garbage cans lifted into the air. One bounded north into our next-door neighbor's back yard, while the other flew around the corner, arced northeast, and plunged between two neighbors' cars and into the side of their house. Another mighty gust followed, showering more debris than ever on the thin roof overhead. My son made a plaintive sound and I noticed that instead of picking him up or squatting down to comfort him I had instead braced myself beside him in fight-or-flight response, ready to take us both where we needed to be. I guess I was half expecting a limb to land on our little building and I was waiting to see what needed to happen.
But then I did comfort him (he was fine), put him in the car, backed out, returned the trash bins, and took him to day care. It wasn't until I came home twenty minutes later that the wind had done a few other things. For one thing it had moved a trash can out to the end of the driveway. No surprise there. For another it had picked up our upstairs neighbors' pair of white plastic lounge chairs and launched them in opposite directions through the neighborhood (one into our backyard, the other quite a bit farther away in the next backyard to the south). But most alarming of all was the fact that our gas grill had been planted face down in the nearby flower garden, and that must have taken some doing. It certainly took some doing to right it by myself.
And so all day long I've been wondering about small tornadoes wandering through my neighborhood or just failing to touch down into my backyard. And then I finally find those news stories and learn about the trailer trucks blowing over on people's cars, and I guess I don't have all that good a story.