Tuesday, November 22, 2005

It's quiet here

It’s 1 am on what I consider Monday evening, but I suppose it is technically Tuesday morning.

I don’t know why I’m not sleepy; it just happens once in a while. It is remarkably quiet in my house. It’s the kind of quiet that feels as if it is just visiting and won’t be able to stay long. Often this kind of quiet is totally absent from our urban world. The days are filled with meetings and talk, the evenings with the television and attendant family noise.

This evening reminds me of the midnight shifts I would work on weekends as a police officer. A lot of those nights would be quiet like this, the kind of quiet that seems almost odd. I would pull the police car over in a parking lot, roll down the windows and listen to crickets and an occasional dog barking somewhere off in the distance. There was an occasional radio call to a unit somewhere in another part of town, but mostly just a pleasant quietness.

I was always conscious that the dispatcher could just as suddenly send me on a mission that involved anything but quiet, but the quiet was more often the rule than the exception on those shifts.

The quiet is soon to be broken. Thanksgiving is sitting on the horizon waiting for its chance to visit us again. It will come to my house and it will bring my family home and place them all together for a little while. The quiet will be broken by all the talk, me playing with my grandson, by football on television, and the girls talking about shopping and cooking and the kids.

I like Thanksgiving. It has purity to it. It feels as if it is celebrated for the correct reasons. And for the most part it’s central message remains unstained by commercialism.

I also like quiet.

Given the choice I would choose Thanksgiving and its noise every time though.

I’m hoping you have family and friends, kids, turkey, dressing, football and shopping on your horizon.

If not, well just come on over here because we will have plenty to share with you.

But, it's quiet right now. It's 1:15 am. There is a lone dog voice somewhere down the block.

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