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For once the news isn't filled with images of the devastating earthquake in Christchurch or fairytale pictures of William and Chatherine, even discussions of Osama Bin Laden's death have taken a backseat to yesterday's unbelievable events which took place in our neighbourhood. 

Everyone I meet is talking about the tornedo - trying to digest what happened and counting their blessings.  Everyone has a story to tell - from those (like myself) who narrowly missed the path of the tornado by mere minutes to those who were inside Albany Mall as it began to crumble around them. 

'We just don't have tornadoes in New Zealand' is the recurring theme of conversations and it is this knowledge that prevented my brain from recognising that 'cloud of black smoke' for what it really was.

2011-05-03_tornado1_thumb_medium300_401 2011-05-03_tornado2_thumb_medium300_400


It's obvious now, but when the possibility of a tornedo doesn't exist in your world, all you see in this image is paper flapping amongst smoke - like seagulls circling their next meal.

Here is the house we saw at the roundabout...


We didn't think it was possible for the rain to have caused such damage - but not in a million years would we have thought it might have been a tornedo - we just don't have tornadoes in New Zealand!

Here's an image of our supermarket:



It's amazing the tornado claimed only one fatality.



* Images are courtesy of as uploaded by readers.  If any of these images belong to you and you would like acknowledgement or would like it removed from my pages, please let me know.