Posted tagged ‘night sounds’

“Anything seems possible at night when the rest of the world has gone to sleep.”

July 18, 2017

Today was gray when I first woke up. I went back to sleep, and it was sunny when I awoke the second time. I stayed awake. After two coffees and two newspapers, I was ready to face the day. The animals got fed, I took Gracie outside, put dishes away and  cleaned the kitchen counter. That’s it, my chores, for the day. I do have to take Maddie and Gracie to get their nails cut, but that goes into the errand column and is the singular entry in that column. Most of my day will be lazy and quiet.

I take Gracie out for her last outside trip just before I go to bed. It can be any time between 12:30 and 3. It was around 2 this morning. I turn on my outside light, and it is the only light. All of the houses around me are dark. I walk gently and slowly to the driveway feeling with my foot the change from grass to hardtop. It is downhill to the gate and I shuffle my feet for safety. Once Gracie and I are inside the gate, I sit on the deck steps and wait. After she triggers the yard lights, I can see when she’s done and when we can to go back inside to bed. Sometimes I sit outside a bit longer because the night is so lovely. Gracie recognizes my mood and leans against me, her pat me signal. I listen to all the night sounds. I check out the stars. After a while, I drag myself inside to bed.

The night sky in Ghana was ablaze with stars. Nights were never dark. When I slept outside, during the harmattan, I watched for shooting stars. I saw many. Despite the heat, I slept soundly in my back yard. Roosters were my wake-up calls. When I think back, I realize it all seemed ordinary to me, a usual night. When I go back to Ghana, I have the sense that all of it is familiar especially that rooster outside my window crowing as the day dawns.

“While he lives, he must think; while he thinks, he must dream.”

April 20, 2013

My bedroom window was open all night. It was finally warm enough. The room was filled with the smell of nighttime and of cool fresh air. I could hear the birds, and I heard when it started to rain, one of my favorite sounds in the whole world. I heard the drops fall from the roof to the deck, and I thought maybe I heard a rumble of thunder but then again maybe not. There I was comfy in bed, reading my iPad and surrounded by Fern and Gracie, both asleep and both deeply breathing, more sounds I love. I was totally content.

The top of my Cape Times was wet though it was in two plastic bags. The Globe was dry. I took my time reading the papers and drinking my coffee. Days like today invite leisure, a slow savoring of the morning. The rain stopped a short while back. Out my window I can see the pine trees, and I can’t remember the last time their branches were so still. I can hear birds singing and very now and then a bright yellow goldfinch flies by my window. Their color is in such contrast to the gray branches of the pine trees that I can see every one of these small bright birds who are sitting on branches waiting their turns at the feeders.

If I could change my life, I don’t think I would. Well, one thing maybe: a bit more money so I could travel more often. I imagine my doorbell ringing, and, there, standing on the steps, is a burly man dressed in a suit holding his fedora. He introduces himself as Michael Anthony, the executive secretary of John Beresford Tipton, Jr. In his hand is a cashier’s check for one million dollars made out to me, taxes already paid. I sign what we’d now call a non-disclosure agreement and the check is mine. I remember when I was young I’d watch that show, The Millionaire, and dream about what I’d do with the money. I don’t think I understood the magnitude of a million dollars, and I suspect my dreams back then would have been fairly inexpensive to fulfill. I do remember, though, that one of them was to travel around the world. Sometimes dreams stay with us forever.

“I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day.”

May 7, 2010

It’s a might chilly. This morning, I threw an afghan over the spread, got warm and cozy then fell back to sleep. Gracie joined me. We slept a long while so it’s a late start.

Last night, on the way home, I saw two coyotes. They have become a common sight here on the Cape. Our neighborhood used to have one, but he hasn’t been around in a while. I know because I’ve seen the rabbits. One rabbit is a frequent visitor who eats my flowers and sits on the lawn outside the front door to torment Gracie. When a coyote is around, there are no rabbits or skunks or other small animals. My friend once saved her dog from a coyote. It was early evening, and she was inside when she heard the whelps of her dog, a sheltie. A coyote had it by the haunches and was dragging it away. My friend scared the coyote who ran and left the dog who was unhurt except for a few scratch marks from the coyote’s teeth. Gracie is too big for a coyote.

I used to be a night person, up all hours. In the summer, I’d sit out on the small farmer’s deck I used to have. All the houses around me were dark. I could have been the only person alive in the whole world. I’d sit and listen to the night. I’d hear birds singing and peepers and frogs and katydids who were always the loudest of them all. As I drifted off to sleep at two this morning, I heard the night. It was alive with sounds.