Stephanie Bateman-Graham (stephbg) wrote,
Stephanie Bateman-Graham

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Demons, puppies, and recorders

I will be very pleased when tomorrow's tradesman (due "about 10am") has completed his work.

Last week I investigated a strange squeaky noise outside and discovered that one of our roof ventilation units (a.k.a. whirlybirds or whirligigs) had developed a wobble and thus a squeak at low speed. At no speed it became clear that it had taken a hammering during last year's hailstorm which had possibly pushed it sufficiently out of alignment to place uneven wear on the bearings, which in turn had finally decided to protest.

There's no going back from a squeaky bearing and battered vanes, so I arranged a replacement immediately. Unfortunately it's taken a week for the right colour to come in stock, and the noises have evolved in the meantime. I've been daily expecting an angry delegation of neighbours with torches and pitchforks demanding an end to the noise. I've also been expecting a visit from the RSPCA.

It started as a birdlike chirp, only noticeable because it was incessant. But that was only during light winds. At first when there was enough wind we couldn't hear anything. It was really only bad in the bathroom when one was attempting to concentrate on other things.

For a couple of days the chirp transformed into the anxious whining and yipping of a distressed puppy that could now be clearly heard from my nest in the lounge room. It was also incessant during light winds, but unlike the birdlike chirp it was all too believable that a real puppy was being tortured for hours on end. Not a fun sound to live with. I lived in expectation of a knock on the door from the RSPCA demanding doggy justice.

The wind picked up and the intermittent sounds stopped, replaced by a continuous discordant whine that twisted itself amongst the spaces where insanity lies. Imagine Satan had a toddler who liked to play the recorder. That sound. Even Husband--notoriously unflappable about such things--was moved to comment "Wow, that's really annoying."

I actually remembered this sound well, from when a neighbour's whirlygig had developed a similar fault several years ago. For weeks I wondered at the tenacity of the recorder-wielding demonic child who made such a noise, and the apparent deafness of the parent who permitted it. I eventually tracked the sound to the empty rental diagonally behind us. It stopped eventually; such bliss.

Now the wind is high and That Thing is making the odd sound here and there. Maybe it's constant and I've blocked it out. Maybe I'm imagining the whole thing. Are you real? Am I real?


ETA: It is 5am and I have awoken to the clopping of a five-legged lame horse on cobblestones. Maybe the horse is just drunk, but it definitely has five legs and iron shoes.

Tags: sector 7, take her away

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