Too quiet?

Last night I had trouble sleeping; for some unexplainable reason it was very quiet. Nights in Mwanza are rarely quiet with Monday night usually being the quietest night of the week. However, last night was Tuesday night.
The noise starts mid-afternoon; we have a variety of churches around us and they all believe in having outdoor meetings on a regular basis. Tanzanians of all faiths apparently have the same belief in one area at least; the louder the better. It starts with the “checking of the microphone” so for several minutes you hear, over and over, “hello”; “1-2-3” and even “test-test”. I don’t know why they use the English language for these tests but they usually do. The music and choirs begin followed by the loud preaching, (Is God deaf?) and yelling which continues to grow in volume and emotion as the meeting progesses. There are often 2-3 of these meetings going on at the same time.
As daylight fades and darkness comes the local bars add their loud music to offset the outdoor meetings and all of this is topped off with the Muslim “call to prayer” also done over a loud speaker.
By bedtime, the churches are usually finished but not the bars; we hear several at different times.
There is always people talking as they walk on the road that passes our gate, children playing and crying, dogs barking and the birds (which we have in abundance around our property) singing as they prepare to settle for the night.
As the night progresses it usually settles down to a few distinct noises that last through most of the night. The bars blasting their music over their loudspeakers, the sounds of dogs barking at each other and our own two guard dogs barking at anything that moves.
However, last night it was almost too quiet to sleep because the power was also off most of the night so we didn’t have the usual inside noises; the uneven hum of the overhead fan and the slightly louder noise of my c-pap machine on my nightstand.
Finally I am able to drift off to sleep; awakening occasionally to listen to the unusual silence before drifting back to sleep.
Hope your night is peaceful…or loud…whichever suits you best.


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