If you’ve been around these parts for awhile, you may recall my neighbor, the light sleeper. Rather than shut the windows, she prefers to yell out, “Could you keep it down? We’re trying to sleep.” Mind you, my kids are not screaming or even playing; they are simply talking as we head out the back door to go somewhere. At the unreasonable hour of 8:45 AM. Or 9:45 AM.
Sometimes, of course, we do let them play outside. After the neighbor’s first objections, we have trained them that fighting in the backyard earns them a ticket in the door. But – much to her chagrin – they shriek with delight and call to each other while playing. And she yells for them to be quiet. At 4:00 PM. Because she is teaching a piano lesson.
Unless she instead mimics the shrieking. Seriously. She will stand on the other side of the high wall dividing our yards and mock their shrieks of joy.
I have considered going over there and asking her at just what time she considers it acceptable for my kids to make noise in their own backyard, but I am a little frightened that she is totally whacko. Also, I already know what time she’s OK with noise because I am quite aware of when there is a racket coming from her house.
10:00 at night.
That’s when she’s playing the piano (beautifully), her teenaged son is singing opera (badly), and her dogs are yipping (yippily). I’ve thought about yelling out, “Could you keep it down? I’m trying to sleep.” Or maybe I should record their noise and then play it, loudly, at 9:15 in the morning.