It seemed like we weren't the only people to arrive early. Everyone wanted to get their kids and get them home before whatever tornadoes we were in store might come. The kindergarteners came out first, as they do. After a few minutes, the teachers started herding the ones who hadn't immediately been retrieved back into the building. Then they called everyone else in too. We scuttled in as the first drops began to fall.
"Did it turn into a warning?" I asked, meaning the hurricane watch. "Yes," they said. I eyed the roof of the gym we were standing in and decided it looked just like those metal roofs you see mangled and twisted off buildings that have been hit by hurricanes. I also eyed my very pregnant friend and asked her if she felt like going into labor right this moment. She thought she might hang on a bit. All of a sudden the rain hit the roof with a thunderous noise. I wondered if we'd all become like one big grumpy family as we bedded down in the school for the night.
Mabel and I moved into the hallway where the roof looked more solid, and milled around some more. They told us we could go down to the classrooms and find our children, so we went to pick up Dash from the computer room. He and Mabel were getting a bit high spirited (let's say), so I herded them over to a corner where I felt they wouldn't be in anyone's way if they ran around in circles for a minute.
The minute was up, and I decided things were crazy enough without having my children ricocheting into the walls. I stopped Dash and tried to talk some sobriety into Mabel by invoking the power of authority.
- Stop running around. See that lady over there? That's the principal. She'll send us out in the rain if you keep running like that.
- That's the principal? But she's a girl.
- Yes, ladies can be principals too.
- But she shouldn't be called a principal then.
- Oh, you think she should be a princessipal?
Or a queenipal, she said later.
Then the tornado warning was called off, the rain eased a bit, and we all went home.