I have lived in my sweet little townhouse for quite a while now. I love it. It is just right in so many ways…I love the color of the walls, I love the layout, I love that I have a GARAGE (can I get an AMEN???), I love that I have decorated the place just so, my trouble-maker cats are happy here, and one of the biggest perks is that it is QUIET. It is so nice and quiet. I rarely hear my neighbours and there is basically no street noise. The most I hear is garage doors opening, grass being cut once a week (but not by me!) or kids playing outside on a beautiful day.
As an elementary school music teacher, my work days involve a lot of noise. Ok, sure… we can call it “music” if you really want, but you try spending your day listening to 30 children play the RECORDER at the same time, and then we can talk. Needless to say, I greatly appreciate having a nice, quiet, peaceful home to enjoy at the end of the day.
Now, it seems that there is always a noisy neighbor somewhere. Like….someone on your block has to win the prize for being the noisiest. Right? Kind of like how there has to be the sticks-their-nose-in-everyone-else’s-business neighbor, the neighbor with the bratty kids, the show-off gardener neighbor, the torments-everyone-with-delicious-BBQ-smells neighbor… you get the idea. True though, isn’t it?
Well, recently I came to a rather terrible and deeply concerning realization.
I AM THE NOISY NEIGHBOR.
As I am gushing about how peaceful and quiet my place, next door my poor neighbors are complaining about how the place is nice, but there’s this noisy MUSICIAN (said with disdain) who lives next door and she never shuts up!
It’s actually very funny…I was sitting outside earlier this evening working on this very blog post. I had to come in because the mosquitoes were so large that one of them actually tried to grab my laptop and fly away. Before I came back inside, my next door neighbor came out to water her flowers (she’s in the running for the show-off-gardener title). I have never had a chance to say more than a quick hello to her before. As she was watering and we were both trying to save ourselves from being eaten alive by mosquitoes, I actually asked her just how noisy I am!
She was very kind. She said she could hear when I play but that it wasn’t too loud, that she didn’t mind it at all, and that if it was ever too loud she would come and tell me. It was good to hear that she doesn’t find me too terribly obnoxious! I didn’t tell her that I am planning to transition out of the whole singer-songwriter genre into heavy metal. But I’m sure she won’t mind. ; )
I do try to be respectful of the fact that we share a wall. My big, beautiful upright grand piano is on the opposite wall. I keep the volume of my electric piano reasonably quiet. When I noodle around on the organ I am storing for my brother that *is* on the shared wall, I try not to be too crazy or loud. And I try to keep an eye on the time and avoid playing too early or too late. When I get into my crazy songwriting phases when I wake up in the middle of the night and need to run down to the piano, I use headphones. So…though I am the noisy neighbor, I don’t think I’m too terrible to live next to. At least I hope not!
What about you? Do you have a noisy neighbor? Or, are YOU the noisy one, like me?