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Last night I had just said goodnight to the kids when I noticed that light rain had started falling, so I went out to put the bikes away (it's supposed to be part of the boys' cleaning up chores, but mine was out too so I can't cast stones). All of a sudden the world was split open by a tremendous boom and I about jumped out of my skin! It trailed away into rumbles that made me think it was thunder rather than a nearby house exploding, but I still wasn't sure. I ran right back inside to find the kids fully awake and pretty upset. Zion had his flashlight on and was checking for smoke or fire—he thought it was a house exploding too, and maybe our house. After a shock like that nobody could go right to sleep, so we all came downstairs. Of course I still had to put the bikes away, and as I was doing that I got to talk to all the neighbors who came out to look around for signs of explosion damage, then I went back in to talk with the boys. For some of them their main feeling was distress; for others, excitement. Either way it took a while before anybody was ready to try bed again.

The strangest thing about it all was that we didn't even have the rest of the thunderstorm: we had a few other distant rumbles but nothing more, and it never even rained hard (right then—we had lots of rain in the middle of the night). The only other time I've ever heard thunder that loud was when the building next door was hit by lightening. We looked around for a strike, but didn't find anything. You know how they say you shouldn't swim when you can hear thunder even off in the distance, because you can get lightning way far away from the center of the storm; clearly we've now learned you should never swim at all. Exciting!

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