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This week our family was roused from our beds by the wail of sirens and the blue lights of police cars filtering through our windows. We ran to the door, but couldn’t see anything.

Our community is small and is nestled between lakes and golf courses in the suburbs of Miami. In our neighborhood, noise is unusual.

In bare feet we made our way down the street until we reached the accident. A man had fallen from his motorcycle and had injured his foot. The paramedics labored on his bleeding leg as busybodies concerned neighbors gathered at a respectful distance to observe.

Slowly, the neighborhood gathered to watch the paramedics lift the man on a gurney into the ambulance. The children, grateful for a school night distraction, played on the grass as parents idly stood by.

After the ambulance left, the firemen allowed our children to spray some of the parents with the hoses. Beneath the crescent moon, firetrucks glowed, and children cheered as firemen wound their hoses and sounded their sirens.

Reluctantly, we walked home. The cops, the ambulance and the firetrucks left. Neighbors unhurriedly made their way home and curtains were drawn once again.

We shuffled the kids into bed, assuring them the injured neighbor would soon recover. We settled for the night and quickly fell asleep, grateful for the familiar silence.

Our suburban stupor, briefly punctuated.

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