I suddenly remembered that we had left the cushions out on the chairs on the balcony. Fortunately, the roof overhangs the balcony and heavy rain usually happens without accompanying wind and so falls vertically. Even so it seemed wise to bring the cushions in. They were still dry, so that was OK. Outside on the balcony the air was beautifully cool compared to the stuffiness indoors, so I went out to stand on the balcony. That's when it struck me that rainwater was not cascading off the roof as it should have been doing by now. I looked down to see the state of the street and it didn't makes sense; the street was dry. When I looked up into the sky, I could clearly see the stars. So my ears were telling me one thing, whilst my eyes were telling me something totally different.
Five o'clock in the morning is not a good time to deal with such a contradiction, especially when you're already sleep-deprived, so it took longer than it should have done to grasp what was happening; the main water supply pipe running along the stree had burst almost outside our door and the sounds I could hear were the pounding of the water hitting the walls of the tunnel in which the pipe lies and the splashing of thr escaping water as it rushed downhill along the tunnel. I wondered what I should do, but fortunately someone else had already called the emergency number and a technician soon arrived and switched off the supply.
By now it was approaching six o'clock so I gave up all thoughts of further sleep. It was a very confusing few minutes though.