For several months now, the neighborhood mockingbird has been seranading us all night long. That's OK with me, because I'm not a light sleeper. Once I'm asleep, Mr. Mockingbird can't wake me up.
The past several weeks have given those of us who live near Camp Pendleton some booming of artillery during the daylight and early dark hours. It can be startling at times. At other times, though, it's simply a background sound of bass drumming.
Just over a week ago, I went to my church in the late afternoon. The church is up on a hill that looks out toward Camp Pendleton, where a fire was burning, no doubt started by the shelling.
My daughter's friend has a Marine boyfriend, and he just left for Africa somewhere to prepare for his coming deployment to Iraq. The artillery noise coming from Camp Pendleton seemed to slow down about the time he left for Africa, but that's not on his account, because he's in a maintenance/support unit.
I don't mind the noise from base unless it's especially loud. Like the mockingbird's singing, it doesn't keep me awake. There's an understanding that comes with the artillery sounds, that our Marines are being trained and prepared for battle, so when the fight comes to them in Iraq, they'll be ready to hold their own and take out the enemy. I like that thought.
The past day or two I've heard the neighbor dogs going nuts. This isn't just the usual terrier-mutt dog across the street who doesn't like anybody and tells you about it something fierce if you come near his gate. No, it's the chorus of howling dogs that starts when sirens go by, except there haven't been any sirens. I don't know if some kid on summer vacation got himself a painful dog whistle for entertainment or what, but those dogs sound like they're hurting for the short time they howl.
The worst noise, though, is a neighbor cat in heat. I don't know why the cat's owners don't keep her in the house. That would be really nice for the rest of us, but maybe they can't stand hearing their cat yeowling in the enclosed space of their house. But that's no excuse for letting her go outside.
I say, if you can't stand your cat's heat-yeowling, GET HER SPAYED!!! Your neighbors might learn who her owners are, and you don't want to know what they'll do when they find out!