31 January 2011

this is where we live: oklahoma

I know we're not in Oklahoma anymore, but I'm playing catch up so you'll just have to live with a few Oklahoma posts before I get into life here.

When you ask the average person who lived in Lawton (the town that is adjacent to Ft. Sill), they will tell you they hated it. But I'm unusual because I loved it there. Now, Lawton is pretty dumpy and I got really tired of Wal-Mart, but drive just a few miles out of it into the wildlife refuge and you get this:

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(my only picture of a buffalo. Every time we'd see tons I didn't have my camera)

I think a big reason I loved Oklahoma was because Rob drove me out to the refuge my first weekend there so I had an immediate connection with the land (it sounds cheesy, I know). Everyone I've talked to that didn't like (or hate) Oklahoma either never made it out there, or didn't until right before they left. I think if I stayed in Lawton the whole time I would've had a terrible experience too. But instead, we'd head out to the refuge for a drive every couple of weeks and would fall in love with that place all over again every time.

But there was beauty even in Lawton, simply because of the never-ending sky. These were taken with my phone and you can still get just how gorgeous those clouds are.
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Again, crappy pictures, but gorgeous scenery. These were taken on Ft. Sill, out in the boonies (Ft. Sill consists of main post where all the buildings are, then acres upon acres of land. They need all that land so they can practice shooting their cannons)

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And here is the view from my bedroom window:
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And, the sunsets. When we loved in NC, I remember someone from out west saying that sunsets in the east didn't compare to sunsets out west. They were right. Every night the sky was. just. gorgeous.
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But we did get to experience a real Oklahoma storm. I was really freaked out, not gonna lie. Like, had our 72 hour kits and important paperwork, etc. by the door ready to go to a shelter if we needed to. Thankfully we didn't get any tornadoes in Lawton while we were there. The storm blew in the day before we were going camping, and we didn't know it was coming. So we left to go to Wal-Mart to pick up a couple of things for the campout, and I snapped this picture with my phone:
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Then as we're driving down the highway we see this:
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Now, I know it looks like the sun setting amidst the storm clouds, but this is looking north, not west.
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I was pretty much staring at that spot the whole drive, and I would see lightning strike the earth.

I took this right next to Wal-Mart: it's the clouds rolling extremely quickly southwest. And those clouds were so dark as soon as they covered us it was dark as night. We actually just kept on driving instead of shopping and went straight home.
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These pictures were actually taken after the storm had passed us; I'm looking south where all the action was. Some of these I put on here before, but you get to see them again. (and sorry for the blurry ones, it was my first time taking pictures of lightning and I had no idea what I was doing)
This first one is just for comparison, this is how dark it was that night.
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Then the lightning strikes! None of it hit land, it would just go horizontally across the sky.
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It was incredible.

And, I still miss Oklahoma. A lot. I haven't connected with El Paso yet, and I know it's because we haven't gone up the mountains or into the desert. I'm hoping once I connect with the land it'll feel like home.

4 comments:

  1. very cool pics, jackie. and i'm with you about western skies. that is where i find the beauty, too.

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  2. What amazing pics!! Thanks for giving us a glimpse of Oklahoma.

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  3. Wow those are some amazing pictures! And those storms look really scary!

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  4. I think I would have fallen in love with that place, too! Those storm pictures are awesome!! Have you seen the crazy weather OK is having right now? Tons and tons of snow!!

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