Tuesday, February 24, 2009

My apartment at night

The pop, pop, popping of the steam expanding the radiator; the hum of the refrigerator as it cycles on; the abrupt snap as the refrigerator cycles off; the Indian guy next door screaming into a phone in the room next to mine; the cracking of the window as the temperature outsides gets colder and colder; the shovel hitting the sidewalk across the street as the night maintenance man clears off the entrance of the senior citizens' home; the labored breath as he valiantly tries to breathe through a plugged nose; the whoosh, whoosh, whoosh of car tires on the snow-packed pavement; the soft groan of an airplane miles and miles above; the kid next door screaming because he doesn't want to go to bed; the slam of a car door; the thump , thump, thumping bass notes from a radio in a passing car; the laughter of the couple across the hall as they come in from a late night out; the blare of emergency sirens in the distance, growing ever closer, ever closer until they stop right outside our window at the senior citizens' home; the low rumble of voices as the firemen exit their truck; the beep of a car horn as someone locks their car for the night; the random cracking of the wood floor as the temperature in our apartment cools down for the night; the rustle of the covers as I pull them up, trying to cover my head, trying to drown out the noises; the sound of my own breath as I breathe deeply and count in my head, ever higher, ever higher; the swoswoooshhing of a toilet flushing somewhere in the building; the thumping as someone opens the front door to our building, causing air pressure to change and every apartment door in the building to move just a smidgen; the screech of a car alarm going off in the next block; the crunching of snow on a sidewalk - maybe a late night dog walker?; the click, click, clicking of a computer keyboard from the apartment downstairs; the beating of my own heart as I continue the count, higher, higher, until the sounds lull me into sweet, beautiful sleep.


  1. Okay, so when I get some money, I'll buy you two a house. With a yard.

  2. I love city sounds! I'm from New York and to me there's no sweeter sound to lull you to sleep at night than the sound of a big apartment building. That said, for the first time in my life I've gotten hooked up with an apartment building I DESPISE. Oh, the pain of waiting for the lease to expire.

  3. What a great description. It was easy to picture all of that. I've lived in cities all my life, so I like being surrounded by all those noises. In the last two years, we've lived in a quiet apartment on a quiet street, BUT...something in the air here makes Jrex have really bad allergies. So, I've started wearing earplugs to go to sleep. I LOVE them. The sensory deprevation is amazing.


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