Saturday, February 8, 2020

The tornado at Panera Bread: February 6, 2020

I have a little story to tell...

On Thursday, February 6, 2020, I had a 1:30 pm meeting at Panera in Raleigh, NC. Specifically, the one on Colonnade Drive off Six Forks Road.

I arrived early so I could work on novel number four before my meeting started. Yey, me! I took my obligatory photo of my computer and my coffee as you see below...

My meeting partner texted me that they were running late...the text said 1:44 pm. No problem, I just kept working on my book.

After their arrival we started talking and about 10 or 15 minutes into our conversation, I felt the pressure in my ears change and I immediately got light headed. I said, "Oh, man, my ears." My friend said, "You felt that too?" And as soon as the words slid from their mouth, the clouds broke loose and rain started pelting sideways and the wind started blowing so hard that the outside tables and umbrellas were blowing everywhere. Yes, we were sitting inside of the restaurant, where at this point the power went out.

My friend ran up to the front doors and peered out and then came running back, while screaming, "Everybody take cover. Get into the bathrooms!" And we all got up and ran to the bathroom area. I wound up in the men's room with many others, both male and female. We all stayed in there for a good 10 minutes...everyone was texting their family and friends. It was a scary 10 minutes for sure. My hands were shaking so badly, I could hardly text.

We all emerged unscathed, and went about our way. As I stepped outside to go to my NEW car, by the way, I saw in the parking lot, a tree that was broken in half that had gone THROUGH someones car! It was awful. (Picture featured above)

Having lived through a tornado before, (In April 2011, I had half a pine tree go through my house), these were all typical signs of a tornado and tornado damage. Plus, I felt it in my ears and in my head, just as I did in 2011.

My family was home safely. They endured extreme hail and brutal thunder and lightening. I saw several baseball sized hail as I approached my home. We, our cars, home and property were safe...thankfully!

And that's my story!

My Car :) 
More from Author Deanna Martinez:

My Interview: The Average Joe podcast

Weekend in Snowshoe: The things I saw...

Using owned media as an author

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