Something loud shook the house at about quarter to 11. DD came down asking about it; it shook her loft bed, which is literally bolted to the walls. We went out to look around in the yard and didn't see anything, but it didn't take long for the sirens to start.
Something exploded, a few blocks south of us. We have a view of the smoke and flames from our upstairs window. We think it's one of the small houses in the residential neighborhood there, but we don't know for sure. Lots of speculation: meth lab? gas leak? What else could there be?
@11:15. Now DH is tuned in to the fire department's radio on our new Roku box, and we hear the address. It's a house not a half mile from here, directly south. From the size of the glow, it was not a small fire, and I can hear more sirens coming in now. People died there, surely. Neighbors most likely died, too, if we felt the explosion a half a mile away.
The older two kids are concerned -- what if it's a gas leak? I've already reassured them and sent them back to bed.
It's unsettling, to be sure. It's remarkable how safe you can feel in a place until suddenly, you don't.