Off and on we enjoy visiting Salisbury, NC, a small city/town approximately 40 miles from where we currently live. Salisbury is place rich in history and home to a wonderful main street and fabulous cultural facility called the Waterworks Visual Arts Center.
On a fairly recent visit, I heard two sounds that, not to be corny, resonated with me. Both sounds took me back years in time.
The first sound was church bells. When I was a child growing up in Philadelphia, the church bells rang a few times a day and the melody that played around dinner time is especially memorable to me, not just because it meant “get home” but because it was a lovely tune. I have since learned most church bells are now generated via computer, often several states away from the actual church. Quasimodo would have to be retrained or find himself unemployed.
The second sound was something that I completely forgot about: people in a wedding party beeping their horns. I asked some people younger than myself if this is something they ever heard or heard of and it was not familiar to them. The main reason probably stems from the more recent tradition of holding the wedding and reception at the same location.
Another source of sound that, for me, conjures up feelings of familiarity and comfort is the radio. Where I grew up, there is a 24 hour news station on the radio. Their slogan is “you give us 22 minutes, we’ll give you the world”. Aside from their slogan and very catchy jingle, the sound that was always sort of comforting to me was this strange typewriter like sound that was a constant “taptaptaptap” in the background of the anchorperson’s voice. I am including a live link below (you may have to sit through a commercial) but if you listen to the actual newscaster, you will hear that sound in the background. KYW Newsradio link
Out of habit, and possibly a bit of nostalgia, the last time I was in that area, I put on KYW waiting for that “taptaptap” and the comfort it was to bring. Oddly, after two plus years away, I did not find it at all comforting but rather irritating. When tuning into other stations I had listened to, DJ’s voices that once were like family seemed strange. On my way home, when I approached an area where I was able to get my current stations and heard the voices that are now part of my everyday life, I found myself thinking “home at last”.
3 thoughts on “Sounds Familiar”
I too remember the sound! It was a recording of a telex machine or teletype. You can see a sample of how the telex worked in the movie “Good Morning, Vietnam”. During the 1960s & 1970s, this was state of the art technology … until the Fax Machine!
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Well I am glad to know some poor schmo was not having to sit at a typewriter all day making that sound.
Yes, Diane those sounds ring nostalgia to me as well. It is refreshing and comforting to revisit them.
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