My visitor from Santa Fe (Melissa) and I, decided to meditate mid-morning before drinking coffee. (Our second  cup of the day, a splurge, carried upstairs in cardboard containers from one of five local coffee-joints on or near my corner ranging in cost from $1.25-$5.00.) That morning we set the timer for fifteen minutes and – for a change – add an ‘ambient sound” that (we assumed) would be a ‘soft murmur washing away distraction’ of which there are many … distractions, that is … in my neighborhood: police and fire sirens, ambulances screaming up or down avenues, gardeners blowing fallen blue Hydrangeas blossoms, basketball games in the adjacent schoolyard, an occasional gunshot or barking dog. Melissa chose an ambience titled “Enchanting”. We assumed we would hear something like this [ambient sound] Enchantment #1 or [ambient sound] This! Instead we heard what could be likened to

a humming air conditioner

a far-away dentist grinding down a molar

a power boat heard while under water

a 4th of July digestion

a kitten crawling inside a piano

grinding of teeth

a knife sharpener

a hovering hummingbird amplified

Charlie Chaplin’s little tramp waddling into the sunset

but most precisely, it turned out to be likened to

a playing card pinned to the spokes of a bicycle held by a clothes pin.

Here’s what that sounds like


Strange as it seems – we enjoyed the childish ambient murmur  that underscored those fifteen minutes sidelines from our busy day.  Now: Melissa has gone home to Santa Fe to the opera (“Doctor Atomic” by John Adams] and I’m (with my desk cleared) back at work on two novella’s

“Loving the Unlovables”

otherwise known as “Unprotected”


“The time when things would be better”

Wish me luck, please. The heat, the humidity, my talking books, fb, netflix, garden, bathtub, my coffee drinking are all quite distracting.