Eustacia and I volunteered with the farm market yesterday afternoon. It was supposed to be an all-day affair from 2 to 8, but they didn't need us past 3:30. We wore neon-green vests and directed traffic—and to Kyle, I say "thank you" for the loan of the vests. I know mine went well with my oversized J. Jill robin-blue linen shirt.
The market is held at the fair grounds every Wednesday, and since this is just the second week for it, people still aren't sure when it starts or where to park. The signs at the entrance say it opens at 3:00, but that doesn't stop people from pulling in at 2:20 and asking, "is the market still open?" So, I took the east gate, and Eustacia took the west, and we directed people under threat of rain.
At first, it was just cloudy, but then the assorted clouds turned into one looming gargantuan mass of black swirling anger with thundering tantrums and foot-stomping lightning. We each had an umbrella, and I was sure the metal handles would turn us into lightning rods, with Eustacia under a tree and me standing next to a muddy horse corral with only a mangy ground hog to keep me company.
In the midst of the brief storm, I sang songs to myself and kept a weather eye on the cloud, watching it head east away from my spot on the asphalt. It eventually passed, and muggy sunshine followed it, and the market opened, and people came by the dozens. The bee keeper didn't make it this time, but we had fresh flowers, Amish-grown veggies like you wouldn't believe, homemade dog treats, fresh organic beef, fresh bread, jam, salsa and some beautifully painted gourds.
The real storms didn't come until later with gusting winds, rain coming down in sheets and dime-sized hail. A series of those storms mixed with tornado watches and warnings all evening, and I was glad we had been dismissed early. Kyle, on the other hand, wasn't so lucky.
We had no confirmed tornadoes touching down, but here is Eustacia's impression of a funnel cloud in the back yard: