Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Nick of Time II

Guess what? The build-your-own clock is finally together! And who put the build-your-own clock together? My husband Ken? The man with a degree in engineering? No. It was me, that's who.
There's nothing more frustrating than a box with the words "fun and educational for ages 6 and up" taunting you from under the Christmas tree. The estimated the assembly time listed on the box was 20 minutes. Make that two-and-a-half weeks and 20 minutes (it took 20 minutes just to figure out how to read the directions). But there now - it's done and ticking away in the dining room and will be, if the box is correct, for the next eight hours.
I rather like the ticking. When do you hear a clock tick anymore? It reminds me of the clock that used to hang in the dining room at my aunt's farmhouse in Maine. You wouldn't notice it during the day when people were talking and rustling newspapers, fussing over the big old-fashioned stove that filled half the room, or preparing or cleaning up from dinner. But at night when people were reading or doing jigsaw puzzles, the sound of the clock ticking permeated the room. When it chimed on the hour and half hour you could hear it all the way upstairs.
If we still had clocks around that ticked maybe we wouldn't need to leave radios, TVs, and computers on constantly. The ticking would provide all the background noise we needed to keep ourselves company in the absence of our beloved pet cat. I realized the other day that every random noise in the house I used to chalk up to the cat. Now the cat is gone and yet strangely, all the noises remain. Which means that perhaps she wasn't responsible for any of them and leaves me wondering - what is that? And that? And that??
With the clock ticking I can't hear any of those strange unsettling house noises. At least not for another eight hours.

song: Nick of Time • artist: Bonnie Raitt

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