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I’m fascinated by fossils. We live in an area that oozes with the history of pre-historic man, cave paintings of mammoths and other such treasures, but I find fossils much more interesting. It maybe because I love nature and fossils are usually sea creatures from a million years or so ago. The land around our house is heaving with them, and I can’t go for a walk without half an eye on the ground.

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A few days ago on a trail up through the woods I spotted a shape. It always seems to be shapes that attract. This one was round. I dug it out and held in my hand a perfect sphere with a small nodule. It was particularly heavy and quite fascinating.

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My hubby and I pondered over it and he wondered if it was a musket ball. Half a mile from us is an old forge, one of only two in France that produced musket balls and cannon balls during the Napoleonic times. In the end I measured it and weighed it (one inch across and 38 grams) and put a photo up on the fossil forum. Lots of help and explanations were forthcoming as to what it probably is, and I was told it’s most probably something called an ironstone concretion and not a fossil. It was then fascinating to read up on how these concretions were formed – but far too long to relate here. There are certain spherical concretions called thunder eggs. What a brilliant name! Whether it actually is one or not I can’t be sure, but that’s what I’m calling it. My Thunder Egg! I’m quite sure it has magical powers and is stored with some sort of long-forgotten knowledge from a hundred million years ago when it was formed. If you put it to your ear and close your eyes you can hear water boiling and crashing on rock, earth-shattering explosions as volcanoes spew forth molten lava, and the wail of the winds of change … honest you can!

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