Saturday, October 9, 2010

Daily Reports: Noise

One of the things I find most irritating about Asia (and The Philippines in particular) is how immune people are to noise.

I have the noisiest neighbors: They have 3 yappy-type dogs permanently tied up in the front yard and all they do from sun-up until late at night is bark. Constantly. Loudly. The fighting cocks in the side yard crow. Constantly. Loudly. Nobody says anything.

Then, early every morning, the man of the house comes out into the front yard, starts his chainsaw motorcycle, and opens up the engine full throttle for 30 seconds (I suppose to "warm it up").

I asked Susan and Epril if it bothers them. They never even noticed.

The kids on the corner have a great time banging rocks on these hollow pipes out there for 15 or 20 minutes at a time. Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding. Nobody goes out and tells them to stop. Nobody even shoots them with a pistol.

Special times always call for special levels of noise in The Philippines. Elections have the loudspeaker trucks driving around constantly. (One of those trucks was left idling, blasting campaign music outside of my house for 45 minutes, while the driver took a break.) Religious holidays of course have the vigils with loud music and sermons until 4 a.m. Parades start at 7:45 a.m. for school events. Even the Catholic Church is in on the game, with their loudspeakers firing off a hymn or two at 5 a.m. The local government weekly puts on rallies or concerts until midnight or later at the town square. Nobody notices. Nobody loses any sleep.

And it's funny: When the dogs stop barking. When all of the other noises cease for a moment. This is such an incredibly peaceful and quiet and beautiful place.

But, I don't think the Filipinos notice that either.


tomm said...

don't you just enjoy waking up to barry manalow or the bee gees at 6 in the morning?, just wait christmas celebration, in Jasaan starts just after fiesta in November, you'll just love it. enjoy!

Jungle Jil said...

This Christmas will be my third in Jasaan... I'm familiar with it.