I've been thinking about the difference and quality of noise lately. Back a millennium ago, I lived in The City, and was constantly surrounded by noise. 24/7/365. It was quite a shock the first few months - I literally felt as if I was being physically assailed. After about six months, while I wouldn't say I was used to it, I more or less ignored it. Except for the cacophony of car alarms all night long. You'd have to be dead or deaf to ignore that. Then I fled The City and moved north - not to the country, but to a suburb. Still noisy, but different noise: lawnmowers, car horns, leaf blowers, car radios, cars, dogs. Then I moved to my little rural place. Last week, needing some quiet contemplation and the solace of the endless, starry sky (another big plus living in the middle of nowhere), I went out and stood on the deck. And listened. There was the occasional dog bark, a cow mooing, the faint sound of Phoebe's name being called, one of the Guineas got a bee in his/her bonnet briefly, then Kees crowed - getting in the last word, then distance coyotes and the wind rustling the leaves. While the country is noisy in a way all its own, the difference is that it is noisy against a vast, silent canvas. The silence, like the sky, is so wondrous, it can almost bring you to tears.
If I had the track record of the local weather guys (notice - no women), not only would I be tossed out on my derriere after doing such a terrible job, I'd be hard-pressed to find similar employment anywhere. Yet, day after day, week after week, they get it wrong. Geez. In the spirit of full disclosure, this line of thinking was occurring last Thursday night as I inched along the slippery, icy, snaky road over the mountain in a blizzard - while the weather guy told me that the evening would be perfectly fine, clear skies and just a tad cold. Good thing he wasn't sitting next to me.
On the subject of driving, I have been taking the Defensive Driving Course online (a Godsend) and it's made me realize a few things: a) I tend to fall into the Aggressive Driver category; b) I am easily influenced by dire warnings (I will never between midnight Saturday and 3 AM Sunday, I will sleep 8 hours a night, I will give up my LSD habit -- KIDDING); c) I may never drive again. Seriously, besides the benefit of having 10% taken off my insurance every year for three years, it really does catch you up as to how dangerous all this commuting could be. Given that I have to drive, I'm just going to put on my big girl pants and do it - safely and on high alert. However, I will NOT be found frolicking in the ocean. I did watch "Jaws", after all.
I've been watching Apria and the remaining two sheep, Juno and Linden. The loss of their mother/grandmother seemed to throw the sheep off for a couple of days, then they moved on. Apria, however, continues to 'count' her sheep. Since she is quite visually challenged, she keeps tabs on her charges by placing her nose on each sheep as they squeeze by at feeding time. One...two...three. Now it's one...two... and she waits for number three. She has been doing this twice a day, every day since Flora left us. I may throw the goaties in there just to break the mold, so to speak. THAT would give her something to think about.