Certain sounds have always drifted throughout my nomadic mind only to penetrate the depths of my memories and bottomless soul. They either bring me back to places I’ve traveled to or as far back as to my childhood. Waking up early in the morning while the world is still sleeping on this side of the horizon has become a ritual for me over the last several years. The sky’s dark, shaded arms still reach above the hemisphere while hugging the remainder of an endless dome of stars. As the sun slowly reaches out to touch what is left of the moon, the darkness drifts back behind an epic light making its way back from the other side of an unknown part of the world to me.
The whispers of Mack Trucks are my favorite. Their adventures and journeys flutter along the passing by of one another as they are driven to some distant destination. I remember being around four years old and living with my grandparents after my mother and Daddy C had separated for the first time and hearing the conversation of trucks… or at least imagining I did. We had moved in with my grandparents since my mother was a single mom of two and dropped out of college when she became pregnant with me.
I was never a good sleeper growing up and often found myself lying next to my grandparents or mother when I had bad dreams and ghostly apparitions. My grandparents’ house was in the heart of Camden, New Jersey, and built in the early 1900s. Before Camden had become shaken and stirred with drug addicts, crime and people who destroyed this once, beautiful town, its spirit resonated throughout the compassion and communication between one neighbor to the next and ultimately; one friend to another. This house was extremely haunted but I will save those stories for October.
At night, when I couldn’t sleep well while living with my grandparents, I would climb into their Queen bed and snuggle in between them. Sometimes, when my sister, who was two and a half at the time, noticed I wasn’t in our bedroom with her, she would mosey on down the hall and pull herself up on the bed with us. And there we were; four bears in the bed… so the little one said. (That one was for you mom).My grandparents’ bedroom had one of those large, circular front windows with three long rectangular smaller ones making up one big oval. In the summertime, we would sleep with all of the windows open. And yes, we are still talking about Camden, New Jersey. Back then, you could sleep with your windows open without having to worry about someone climbing through them and murdering you.
So when the day was done and I was left with the imprints of Mack Trucks making their way across state lines and beyond, I felt at peace with the world and ultimately; my little self. After my mom married my step-father and we moved out of the heart of New Jersey, we shifted ourselves to a new city which provided even more noises throughout the night. Not only did I hear Mack Trucks passing by, but I was introduced to the treasures of airplanes as they flung themselves off into the air and right over our heads leaving from the Philadelphia airport and venturing off to some exquisite island or unfamiliar continent.
The town I reside in now is a couple of miles shy of the highway and a small, local airport where personal and company airplanes take off. Still, all the same, the sounds which carry on outside of my window and straight to the right side of my brain bring me back to my childhood and the warmth of protection and feeling that the whole world is in my hands. When you are a child, the world seems as vast and carefree as our dreams and imaginations take us to higher places and childlike musings. We didn’t have a worry in the world other than playing with our friends, where we would build our forts, and what games and adventures were going to make up.
When I’m lying in my bed now, gazing out into the infinite, dark sky, listening to the distant commercial planes from an even bigger airport about 20 miles away, my mind drifts off to tropical places and distant lands I haven’t ventured to yet and am not sure if I ever will. I think about places like Cairo, Medjugorje, Tokyo, Bali, Rio, the coast of Thailand and South Africa and wonder to myself; what are the people doing there and where are their devises and desires taking them at this very moment?
Like all creatives, my mind is constantly thriving on the unimaginable and coincidently, the imaginable. Both go hand in hand when you’re a writer. My brain depends on the musings and recollections of my childhood and all of the things I thought were true and have learned and are still learning about throughout the years. My untamed thoughts frolic beyond the meadows of the paintings I’ve managed to hold onto in my mind. My fingers get lost and tangled in my mother’s long blonde hair as I look over to my desk at her graduation portrait and feel the warmth of her memories engulfing me and soaking me in the decadence of my adolescence.
What about you? Are there certain sounds that bring you to different places in your life? Are there any noises or musical tunes you like to listen to when falling asleep or being creative?