A post I wrote quite a while ago to purge the demons…
One of the downsides to where I live—not the community, but the particular spot on which my little trailer sits—is the noise. My bed is about five meters from our concert space, and when the weather starts to get warm and people start to feel the urge to congregate around piles of burning twigs, they arrange themselves on a bench several meters away from my window to flap their lips and clink their bottles. And, naturally, they set up the stereo speakers so that they can listen to music as they do so, which entails pointing them directly at my wagon, where I am often laying in bed, head beneath three pillows, cursing their unborn children.
Most of the time it doesn’t matter. Most of the time I drink a beer with intentions of actually attending the concerts in the space just beyond my bed, only to fall asleep just as the music is starting. Last month I slept through four punk bands and a pepper spray explosion (pepper spray falls out of pocket during concert, gets stepped on, empties room, wrecks havoc). I wanted to see the last band, hell, I would have liked to have seen any of the bands. But instead a poorly timed wheat beer turned my limbs to lead and I lay in bed with the distinct feeling that I would never move again and the faint hope that I would be feeling normal again by the time the last band came on. “At least from here I’ll here it when they go on,” I thought just before dozing off for the evening. I am not a light sleeper.
Point is, I can stand quite a lot of noise, but I can only stand it as long as 1. the windows aren’t vibrating (I do not heart techno parties) and 2. I am alone. Add another person to the equation and I become so concerned with their tolerance for the noise that I can no longer handle it myself. Fast forward to tonight.
Tonight there was a folk concert in the house garden. When I saw the organizers tidying up the garden, I briefly cursed, and then I accepted my fate; the concert would be held just beyond my desk-side window, and I could escape no note as long as I spent the evening writing from the comfort of my nest, as I intended to do. And as I sat at my desk, stringing together words to give to you, I heard the overly earnest singers and the cliched lyrics (oh “folk punk,” so easy to love, so easy to hate). I heard the audiences’ polite applause and the crackling of the bonfire. And because all of it was in English, there was no hope of blending a second of it into background fuzz.
Two of the musicians were particularly interested in starting a discussion with the audience (generally, an awesome concept), and this too, I could not escape, though I would have liked to because I’d seen this group play here before and throughout their show and the conversation that followed, I developed a deep and lasting dislike for them, their music, and their art of talking about both. But that is neither here nor there. The concert was fairly quiet, if irritating, and now, with the music long over and the audience gone home, I can sit in quiet once again, and enjoy it all the more.