We were the lucky ones yesterday. Our storm aftermath is a pretty morning and local children back in school, almost as though nothing had happened. Not so for our neighbors just across the state line.
Enterprise, Alabama is about 130 miles to the northeast of Pensacola. Here is the Pensacola News Journal’s report of the tornado that hit the Enterprise high school shortly after 1:00 p.m. yesterday.
Buck and I were the closest adults in the family to Episcopal Day School when their emergency system kicked in. Their mom called us on my cell phone. School was closing. Get the kids. Fast. Luckily, we were headed to Joe Patti’s Seafood, unaware of the tornado threat, and only minutes away from the school. Buck dropped me off and circled the block. I joined a line of parents, grandparents and family friends to sign the kids out. Worried faces averted, then happy smiles for the children as they began to tumble through the double glass doors into the crowded foyer area.
Our littlest struggled with the weight of a backpack that looked bigger than she is. (Did we have so many books in the second grade?)
The kids’ dad, leaving work, met us at home and we transferred them from our vehicle to his, with hugs and waves that will last until Sunday supper this weekend.
Later, we turned on the television and saw reports from Enterprise. I couldn’t help but think on a completely personal level about how our day could have ended differently.