Postaday and three topics to cover….

I know I said no excuses for this year but this virus is still knocking me for six but as a true writer, I am battling on. I have yesterday’s blog to catch up on and I guess I won’t have time to do both. I am going to go with today’s suggestion which is ‘what is my favourite sound?’

All these topics are just so hard because I can never pin the answers down to one thing. The most immediate thought I have for this topic is water. Water running, water splashing, trickling,dropping… anything to do with water. I grew up practically on the beach in St Leonards, every day I was never far away from the water if I wasn’t in it. I really cannot think of anything that provokes passion and feeling as much as the sea. On a clear, calm day the tide gently splashes its rhythm like a heartbeat onto the shore then takes its breath along with the sliding shingle on the ebb flow. What a perfect place to sit and contemplate when you are in love. There is a magic in everything around that soothing sound. The salt smell of the air, the sounds of the gulls as they call and squall above in their search for food, the crunch of footsteps on shingle and the impression of footprints in the sand are all enhanced when just sitting and watching and listening in front of the vastness of the ocean.

Moonlight on the waves gives an even more romantic feel to the air, especially when shared with someone special. But then everyone knows what I feel about the moonlight so there might be a bit of bias there. The sea-shore is a magical place but then so is a stream or a river as it rushes over a weir and the mist from the spray gives a medium for all the colours in the water rainbow. Such a gentle vision against the roar of fast flowing water. As strong and as violent as the sea in a storm when waves six feet, seven, ten feet high crash down as loud as thunder onto the black rocks, the weir is constant, controlled and noisy.

In the silence of meditation, the gentle sound of a waterfall or the trickle of the filter in the pond provides a comforting sound that carries me away to anywhere I choose to go. These days my hearing has changed and I no longer hear the same as I used to. In the shower I hear music. More than the water splashing on the tiles or on my skin, I can hear its journey from the shower head to the drain outside and each movement has a different note. Together they sometimes sound like a choir of heavenly voices, other times I have heard an orchestra or jazz music. Often they are just gentle notes that rise and fall as a single clear voice. The drain has a deep echoing sound and depending on the wind reminds me of a soulful song that echoes in a large empty room. It is without a doubt the most wonderful sound for me and even though my hearing of normal sounds has changed dramatically, I am thankful I can hear the other sounds that before I never noticed.

I was in the supermarket today, not feeling my best and I heard a small child of about three giggling. Immediately it lifted my mood so much. This wonderful, infectious laughter reminded me of the other sound that I love as it rose above all the supermarket noises but it does sort of connect with the water too. During the week the junior school take their classes swimming to the pool not far from where I live and, especially in the summer I hear the crocodile of children through my open windows as they walk by excitedly chattering. It reminds me so much of a brook that tumbles its way, laughing over rocks and dodging round boulders on its way to the sea. The more I listen to the little chattering the more the rise and fall of their voices recalls the river to me. Little individual giggles, the laughter that crescendos over the other gentler murmurs before falling back to join the sea of voices and allowing another to take its place is no less emotive than the river.

So I guess that the sound of children’s voices comes a close second to water. Whether in a group or laughing, shouting, whispering, singing or baby coos, each individual sound is really close to my heart. OK, OK I agree, there are times they drive you mad, both children’s voices and water but if I sit and really listen, both can carry me away to another place and time with all the images and sounds that go with them. I guess this entry has reminded me that instead of just hearing, it is important to stop for a moment and listen…. really listen.

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