Typhoon Songda's wrath


These are the only before and after shots that I really captured of Typhoon Songda.  A day or two before the storm, I was on a walk and thought this vine-covered building would make a neat photo.  We passed the same building the day after Songda and I had to do a double take. 

A typhoon and a hurricane are the same thing.  In the western Pacific they call them typhoons. In the Eastern Pacific to the Atlantic they call them hurricanes.  In the South Pacific and Indian Ocean they are called Cyclones.  Go figure.  Australians call them willy-willy's or something like that...either way, they are scary!  And never to be underestimated.
We totally underestimated Songda, the typhoon that swept over Okinawa with winds reaching 150mph.
By 8pm, night was upon us and we could no longer watch the winds progress, we could only hear it.  We went outside at one point and could barely keep our balance.  That was around 7:30pm.  By 11pm, I was terrified.  The winds were so strong, I thought our windows would shatter at any moment.  All night long, they got louder, stronger and harder.  Adam was snoozing through the entire thing (of course) and I crawled down to the floor and covered myself with a blanket, debating on whether or not to get in the shower.  I was awake all night long.  When we woke up the next morning...around 5am, we took Cinder for a walk (it was her first night with us!!) and the farmlands of Yomitan were blown sideways.  Debris was everywhere, gates down, powerlines out, looked very different in the green areas.  However, all of Okinawa's structures are built with reinforced concrete and shatterproof glass..Literally, every building you see is concrete.  There is a reason for this!  No buildings were demolished, no one was killed.
Here is what we read about the storm:
“This storm was no joke, that’s for sure,” said Technical Sgt. Robert Fournier of the 18th Weather Flight on Kadena Air Base.
Fournier said Typhoon Songda was one of the most powerful storms he has seen in his four years on Okinawa. The Okinawa Meteorological Observatory said it was the strongest storm to hit Okinawa since it began keeping records in 1972, the year the United States returned the island prefecture to Japan.
What saved the island from worse wind damage was the nature of the storm itself, Fournier said.
“Fortunately for the island, the 135 knot (155 mph) winds were a thousand feet or so up,” he said. “The strong winds were not at the surface, where they could have caused some serious damage.”

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