Monday, July 02, 2007

Thirteen Tornadoes

On July 2, 1997, my then-wife and I were supposed to go around and see prospective apartments all day. We had arrived from Virginia the day before. It was hot, we were staying at a teacher's house in Grosse Pointe Woods, watching a dog in exchange and also visiting with the ex's brother and sister-in-law at the smallest most ramshackle house in all of the City of Grosse Pointe. Late in the day, thirteen tornadoes ripped through the area, ranging from Hamtramck to Lake Saint Clair. Just before they struck, we managed to huddle in a tiny basement and watch through a cinder block-sized window as the winds raked overhead, knocking over large trees and power lines like an aerial freight train. It was wild -- seven people in Wayne County were reported killed by this tornadic visitation.

Afterwards, we emerged from underground and saw the widespread destruction -- some of the very places we were about to check out as apartment dwellings now had large elm and oak trees shoved into their roofs and sides. It was surely a sign of things to come living in Metro Detroit. Ten years later, I'm still here, a veteran of surrealistic life and varied surprises.

Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall. Though they have four kids, their common law marriage was blown apart by tornadic activity in the form of Luciana Gimenez, a Lebanese Brazilian model.

Tina Turner, another of the sexiest rock stars of all. Her marriage with Ike Turner did not survive tornadic ravages, either.

Korean actress Moon So-ri contemplating various forms of psychic storm damage.

Today's Rune: Signals.

Birthdays: Herman Hesse, René Lacoste, Thurgood Marshall, Ken Curtis, Wibo (Wim Boost), Medgar Evers, Brock Peters (b. George Fisher), Richard Petty (Level Cross, North Carolina), Jerry Hall, Yancy Butler, Moon So-ri, Lindsay Lohan. News flash: Lindsay Lohan is 21! Woo-hoo!

Ciao! Detroit!


JR's Thumbprints said...

Here's a trivia question for you Erik: What's the name of Old 8 Mile Road?

Erik Donald France said...

Hey Jim. Not really sure -- Vernier, Old Eight Mile Road, Base Line Road?

Johnny Yen said...

Funny-- I'm coming up on the tenth annniversary of the infamous July 4th when my first wife asked for a divorce and the day ended in a wild fashion....

The day I actually ended moving out was August 13, which had actually been the day we'd originally planned to get married (it was the 20th anniversary of Elvis' death). There was an incredible storm that day, and me and a friend's boyfriend got my stuff inside just before an incredible rainstorm hit. Warnings indeed.

the walking man said...

In answer to JR's trivia it's Old 8 mile, the road that goes directly inn front of Eastland after 8 mile curves off is Vernier.

I remember that day, I was working in the DPW garage and stopped , went to the door and watched the transformers on pole after pole after pole just blow up, this was at Southfield and Plymouth roads before they were little more than extreme high winds for the area.

Our hous which is about five miles west of the Grosse Point e Park where the people were blown into the lake was unscathed until three days later when a pole cracked off and took the power out for 5 days.