Sunday, December 17, 2006

Night Noises

Thursday night we were flipping through the channels and I heard it-- the eerie sounds of the foxes in the distance. We muted the TV and listened to them yip. They sounded far off, far off enough that the cats were not bothered at all and continued to snooze.

I remember when we moved into this house. It was July and we were exhausted. We had set up the family room before returning to the old house to collect the cats. We figured both we and the kitties would like to find something familiar when we came "home." We when came back with the cats, we slouched sweaty on the furniture, the back slider doors wide open to let in the faint breeze, and that's the first time we heard the foxes. Their yelps were like sounds from a specter-- I sat up straight, the cats' tails bushed out, and Partner asked in a whisper, "What in the hell is that?"

"I don't know," I told her, "but it is sure is creepy." I closed the sliding glass doors, took the cats out of the windows, and soon after that we went to bed, unsure of whether we loved or hated the new house and neighborhood. We were closer to downtown (a mere seven minutes away!), but we were in the country at the same time. Later in the autumn when a landscaper came to give us a bid on putting in yard, he exclaimed at the size of the coyote footprint in the mud. And by this time we were both nonchalant enough about our new wild neighbors, we shrugged.

How quickly we acclimate ourselves.

This weekend we were at my parents house, and I found myself wide awake this morning after my 4:00 am trip to the bathroom. I was awake for about an hour, solving world problems, finishing my BSN (in my head), writing the blog, doing all the Christmas cards, shopping and cooking, and writing a best selling novel, all without moving out of the bed.

The night noises, which at one time would have been background to my life, were so different. First of all there was dog, whimpering at our door, sniffing around, hoping to get into our room. My parents' bedroom door opening and closing, a silent beckoning of the dog. A pipe running. About 4:30, the sound of a car, starting and stopping all down the street, each stop punctuated by a "ffffff-plop" as the paper was tossed from a car window to land on the driveway. The bed was hard. Partner, dare I say it, was snoring.

I longed for our saggy bed in our too large master bedroom and some cats sleeping at my feet. The only noise I really deal with now in the night is the humidifier, if I choose to run it. Maybe the cats will get up and walk around, but it's pretty silent. Even the foxes stop their whelps after a certain time of night.

Ironically, last night what finally lulled me back to sleep was the flip-flopping of Cricket rumbling around in pre-dawn gymnastics. And I thought about Cricket crying in the middle of the night, how jarring the sound will be in the middle of our silent nights.

How jarring, how beautifully, wonderfully jarring. And then I fell right back to sleep, with the sweetest dreams of the whole night.


Blogger Suz said...

It is jarring...but the beauty is both in the cry and your ability to answer it. I'm so glad that you, partner, and Cricket are doing well.

7:03 PM  

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