Wednesday, July 4, 2012

How GTA Vice City nearly killed me!

I had just acquired my first Xbox, because a friend of mine had one that wouldn't read discs anymore, and I figured the best thing to do was to start buying the GTA series because I had always wanted to play them. I didn't have a PS2 yet, because their's was still working (lol), so after fixing the Xbox I went to work on GTA III. After I was bored with GTA III I moved on to Vice City, the map was smaller but the fun was bigger and there seemed to be more things to do than before.

One night I was cruising the streets of Vice City doing what I would normally do, running people over, collecting my business income and using cheat codes to go on rampage killing sprees, when I received a phone call. Now for some reason I'm not a normal human being, or perhaps I am, in the fact that I simply can not sit still while I'm on the phone, I need to be up and walking around, for whatever reason. Part of my habit of walking around while on the phone was looking out the kitchen window and across the horizon, which had quite a surprise in store for me.

As I looked out from the kitchen window the sky hung heavy over the horizon with lightning and darkness looming eerily in the distance. I had been so enveloped in doing my business in Vice City that I was completely unaware that there was a tornado warning issued for my current area! Normally there are storms that would alert me to any impending alarming weather, but that night there wasn't.

I abruptly ended the phone call and went to switch the TV to the local news stations, which confirmed my fears that the weather was about to become extremely and violently severe. No sooner had I changed the channel to the local news and saw the incoming threat, the power went out. Nothing but the sounds of the wind wishing and washing against the trees and windows outside.

Lightning came closer and closer, followed by deafening crackles of thunder. Soon came the rain, as I collected myself and headed into the central bathroom and listened to a local radio station for further news about the storms. The wind and thunder shook the house and the trees started to bend, it seemed as if the roof was going to come off!

For what seemed like forever, but perhaps only lasted 30 minutes, I huddled in the bathroom hoping for my safety, wishing the storm would go away and leave nothing harmed. When the storm finally subsided I walked into the living room and checked all the windows, to make sure nothing was broken, luckily everything was in tact and ok. But without power the house was quickly heating up inside, so I decided to open a few windows and await the return of electricity.

The electric company came and checked for any down lines, blown transformers and power was finally restored in the early morning hours. Later that day I went to check out any possible damage or evidence that a tornado had come through, and as a matter of fact there had been! Many trees were broken, uprooted and the standard of bare without leaves, but not even a mile south there was a clear path of where a tornado had touched down and carved it's way through some trees, luckily it only went through the trees.

I can't blame GTA Vice City for nearly killing me, it was the storms that would have done the damage. But Vice City was so addictive that I played it so inventively that I wasn't even aware there were storms headed my way. A strange story, but something Vice City and I will always share.

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