Every day I would walk to my office at Clairol/Bristol Meyers at 345 Park Avenue. I lived at 60th and 3rd and my office was at 50th and Park. I loved those walks. So much to see...but the noise! At the time, NYC did not have an ordinance against honking. HONK! The noise was so annoying. HONK! Every time the traffic slowed, the cars would lay on their horns. HONK!
My favorite time of day was Sunday morning at 7am. The city that doesn't sleep, sleeps in on Sunday morning. Yes, a well kept secret, NYC is quiet on Sunday morning. I would pull on a jacket and make my way to the corner to buy the Times. I remember being able to hear the sounds of the businesses sliding open the iron bars that protected their stores. I loved to hear the different languages that the business owners would speak as they greeted their neighbors at the start of the day. I could hear my heels click on the pavement. The swish of the air as it came up from the sidewalk grates. So ordinary, but true New York sounds.
For me, it was a relief. After a week of walking through so much HONKing, the solitude was wonderful...and memorable. When we take the time to notice sounds, we not only hear the sounds, but we seal the memory of a time and place in our memory vault.
My life, so different now. I spend Sunday mornings reading the Chicago Tribune with my husband and the cup of coffee comes out of the carafe in my kitchen (where I do use the stove often). But, I can look back on those days and remember those details because I treasured the rare quiet of an ordinary morning in NYC.