Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hearing Bells

10:57 am. I pull into the parking lot of the FWISD Professional Development Center and lock my car. I will only have to make this drive one more time since the semester is almost done. It has been a tough class. Nothing has worked out well for the class or my students. It has been an eye opening learning experience for me but I am tired and looking forward to the class being over.

Have you ever noticed how sound is different at different temperatures? It seems that sound gets muffled in the heat. Maybe it is the moisture in the air that causes the sound to lose some of its edge. They become muted by the humidity.

Not today though. It was cool and crisp and quiet. I walk across the parking lot in downtown Ft. Worth and I am aware of the noise my boot heels make on the paved surface. I can hear a gang of grackles in a tree at the end of the block. I hate those birds. They don't have a song, so much as they have the noise of a broken fast food speaker. I can hear the sound of traffic but my boots still serve as the central soundtrack.

11:00: I think to myself, "Ha...I am almost right on time!" and then I hear it. The church on the corner has a bell tower that rings out marking the hour. I stop and listen. Being a city girl I have grown up in neighborhoods that have many churches. One intersection in Philadelphia has 3 churches...one Irish Catholic, one Polish Catholic and one Greek Orthodox. Each church was built by construction workers of that parrish and then attended by their family, friends and descendants. They all had bell towers and I grew up with this familiar sound. I stop and listen.

As the bells finish, I start to open the door of the building but then they start again. They ring out a tune and I smile and tears spring to my eyes. I am a sap. I stay outside to hear the end of the song. My class will wait for me.

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