Suddenly, off to our left in the pitch dark of a moonless night we spotted an impossibly high rhythmically blinking red light. Before we could say "Close Encounter" the vista expanded. It seemed as if an entire army of red-eyed creatures a couple of hundred feet high was staring menacingly at us.
As daylight broke, we regained consciousness. Painfully, we slid out from underneath the rental car, rose to our feet unsteadily, and took a cautious look around. No aliens, anywhere.
What we did see, though, was no less astonishing: the new "Rail Splitter Wind Farm" between Springfield and Peoria.
Here is an aerial view. Here are the numbers. Here are the folks operating it.
And below is the answer to a good friend's first question when we called in our report. He asked, "Do they make any noise?"