If you're getting tired of the "the South is so different and cool" theme I've had going, I apologize.
I promise to branch out, after this.
Last weekend, while wandering the country roads in our constant search for a secluded farm house on some land, Alexe thought she spotted some flames in the woods to our right. The road side was scorched, with black burn marks going a ways into the woods, and several memorial crosses on the side of the road.
The flames were farther back into the woods, and we didn't know if someone was doing a controlled burn (a popular alternative to mowing down here), whose land it was, and where the nearest house was.
We were pondering the situation, rolling slowly forward in the truck, when a car came up behind us, pulled alongside, and rolled down the window.
The fellow assumed we were looking at the scorching next to the road, and told us about a person that had been racing around the back roads, hit the power poll, and exploded.
We expressed our horror, and then asked how recently it had happened, since there were still flames in the forest. The chap didn't believe us, so we backed up the road, and he and I hopped out and walked into the woods.
We made our way through the scorched trees that had been burned weeks earlier by the accident, and came into healthy trees, with a single exception. A pine about 5 inches in diameter was missing bits of bark all the way up it's side, and in a concentric circle around it's base, flames had slowly cooked through about 6 feet of the pine needle cover.
I felt the trunk, and it was cool, but the lightning had obviously snaked down the tree, ignited the base somehow, and created a circle of short flames that stretched out in a pretty circle around the tree.
We stomped the flames down, but they kept popping up. The chap I was with turned out to live a couple doors down, so we left with the persistent little flames still popping up, and he assured me he'd check back to see if the current drizzle and impending downpour took care of it.