Saturday, June 2, 2007

Comfort Sounds

Last night as I was dropping off to sleep I heard the sound of a train approaching town.  I listened as it whistled its way through town and then off into the distance. It was a calming and familiar sound. I enjoyed it, and then went to sleep.

Most of my life I have lived close enough to the railroad tracks to hear the trains that pass through at night. Their sounds have become a lullaby.

For a while I had a mobile home a few yards from the track. When the trains passed by, it was no gentle sound but a roar that shook the bed, but even so, you soon become accustomed to it, enjoy it even, and even sleep through it if you are already asleep.

For several years I lived far from the railroad, but close to the ocean.  In those years, I was comforted by the mournful sound of the fog horn on foggy nights, and by the sounds of the crashing surf on clear ones.

Once when traveling, I checked into a motel late at night, and clerk apologized for having only one room left, adjacent to the highway and the sound of trucks. He was right.  It sounded as if the trucks were coming right into the room.  But as soon as I realized that I was not going to be crushed in my bed, I managed to sleep well, with a new and different rock-a-bye. 

So trains and horns and trucks can become comforting sleep aids, but what do you folks who live far from tracks, highways, and ocean use for comfort sounds?

9 comments:

plieck30 said...

The whirr of the air is my favorite here in south texas. I do like to hear trains at night. If the wind is just right we can here one sometime. Paula

bamawmn46 said...

I seem to have always lived on the flight path to the same airport. Even 40 miles from my parents, the jets just fly above me........
Jackie

msecz said...

Some nights I hear the train go by far away and others if there is a noise it usually wakes us up... pretty quiet here most nights. I like the sound of the train in the distance but wonder if it was close how I would like it.
Sandra

kateh2ocolorart said...

barking dogs, chirping birds (what kind of bird chirps all NIGHT?), wind chimes, dragsters, motorcyles and sirens...oh, and the TRAIN at a distance plus the occassional helicopter or small plane...gee...I USED to live in the country, and *I* have NOT moved!

tendernoggle said...

When my husband was alive and we went to the beach and also when we went to the mountains and slept near the mountain streams...was some of the best sleep!
love ya,
carlene

mavarin said...

Air conditioning.  Mockingbirds.  But I've pretty much always been able to hear the occasional train whistle at night - even when it was impossible.

ggjack7 said...

Have you ever taken a ride on a Pullman car, I'll bet you did, my dad was a Pullman Conductor during WWII, he had a lot of troop trains. Now that's good sleepen. I love to hear a train whistle and have fallen asleep many a night with that sound, now it's sirens and altogether different sound. gg

ggjack7 said...

Have you ever taken a ride on a Pullman car, I'll bet you did, my dad was a Pullman Conductor during WWII, he had a lot of troop trains. Now that's good sleepen. I love to hear a train whistle and have fallen asleep many a night with that sound, now it's sirens and altogether different sound. gg

jaykolb said...

Tree frogs, bullfrogs, crickets, cicadas.  The volume can get pretty high at times, but as long as they sing, I know all's right wih the world.

~~Silk
http://SilkenDrum.blogspot.com/