I knew there was bad weather in the cards today, so hearing the county warning siren at about a quarter after eight this morning wasn't so much a surprise as an incongruity -- I'd only ever heard them being tested before, and it took a moment to understand that this couldn't possibly be a test.
None of the weather apps on my phone showed a tornado warning. A glance at the official Twitter timelines didn't turn up anything either, at least initially. The better part of valor was to get to the most tornado-proof room in the house, but we really don't have one.
While I considered, I finally found the tornado warning both on Twitter and the weather apps, and the radar app showed an approaching storm with a pronounced tailhook shape. What's more, the home acres were smack in the middle of the warning polygon
The vast majority of tornadoes, as it happens, don't level homes, so the biggest danger in our case would be from falling trees. I could be safer downstairs, even with windows in almost every room, and heavy appliances overhead of the sole exception. So, hoping the odds would hold, I went into the finished basement to wait out the warning.
Over time the storm's hook faded out, reappeared, and re-dissipated, all before it got here. Mrs. McG was at work, where she was well able to track the big picture, but I texted her a more home-centric series of updates, including a wry observation that the train sound I was hearing was from an actual train. In the end, I came back upstairs as the warning ended, not with a roar, but with a whisper.
It's possible we may have to go through this all again later today, but I'd rather not, thanks.