Notes from the Waxhaws

Expect the unexpected

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They say that travel broadens the mind. I encountered something today, unexpectedly, that left a deep impression. I awoke early this morning, grabbed some coffee and a waffle down in the hotel restaurant, and then headed north a few miles to Hungry Mother State Park. The sky was gray, with misty clouds shrouding the surrounding mountains.


Afterwards, I had planned to drive west about thirty miles to the historic town of Abingdon. Midway along I-81, I saw something that took a while to register in my mind, as to what exactly lay on both sides of the highway. There was utter devastation of houses amidst piles of rubble, with columns of smoke rising from numerous places up into the leaden sky. Whole groves of trees were snapped in half, with many completely uprooted out of the ground. The scene before me went on for at least a mile. I was literally awestruck by the thought of the sheer power that had laid waste to this community. It finally dawned on me that this was the result of what could only have been a massive tornado. I’ve seen many reports on television of destruction from such storms, but none of them prepared me for the scope of what lay before my eyes. A picture just can’t convey the enormity of it all. I have a newfound respect for what tornadoes are capable of doing. My heart goes out to the people of Glade Springs, Virginia, who had to endure this on April 28th.

Written by Jim

May 14, 2011 at 1:08 pm

Posted in Nature, Travel

Tagged with ,

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