While the unpronounceable volcano in Iceland spews ash and disrupts travel (please settle down before we head for Scotland), we come to the thirtieth anniversary of the eruption of Mt. St. Helen's.
On that Sunday morning thirty years ago, we came out of church to find a big black cloud in the sky. The eruption had happened just as we were going in to Mass. We hadn't had the radio on in the car on the way. "Big storm coming--wow!" was what we were thinking at that point.
We headed off to breakfast with Grandma and Grandpa--no, in those days we were not Grandma and Grandpa ourselves. The waitress said something about the volcano. What? "Mt. St. Helens--it erupted." "You're kidding!"
She was not kidding.
We were at the very edge of the drop zone. The sparce ash that fell on us was coarse--more like beach sand. Not too far away, however, the ashfall in Yakima was thick and the consistency of talcum powder. It darkened the skies and the street lights came on. That didn't make much difference, as with that ash in the air, people did not go out. They were too fond of breathing. The ash in the air clogged air filters in cars--a good recipe for a ruined engine.
Closer to the event's source, the blast, which knocked the north side of the mountain off and took about a thousand feet of its elevation, also made the forest on nearby hills look like a pile of toothpicks. Logjams blocked up nearby rivers. Floods and mudflows were devastating.
That's My World--after 30 years.