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All is quiet on the Western front.

No barking.  No floor shaking from dogs running to see who is at the door.  No dogs begging for rubs or grub or dubs.  No scratching at the door to be let in or outside.  Today is what retirement would look like without three dogs in my life.

If the dogs were here —  rather than at the groomers — I could think.  I need noise to think.  Living with four children trained me to think with noise.

Noise always meant all was well.  Only when life grew quiet was it time to worry, time to go investigate to see what  trouble was brewing with the kids.  Murals on the wall?  Shaving faces or legs?  Talking on the phone after hours?  Too much quiet is a scary thing.

Daddy’s life would be too quiet except for the saving sounds of his television set.  When Dad’s roommate’s television is on at the same time as Daddy’s, I wonder how they stand each others noise.  Do their competing sounds drive one another crazy?

Yesterday, Daddy hit the wrong button on his remote, which turned the sound up from “normal” loud to blaring.  Daddy’s roommate Larry responded in kind.  Sitting between the dueling television remotes, I wondered what the neighbors were thinking — if they could hear themselves think.

Vibrating walls and sounds don’t bother Daddy or Larry; I get the feeling that making noise is all in a day’s work.  Usually, the television noise lulls one or both to sleep.  Perhaps the vibrations stemming from Daddy’s walls lull the neighbors to sleep as well.

A noisy world is a good thing.  A little noise helps one appreciate the quiet.  What I would give for a few good barks.