My apartment is a developed cavern. I did not realize when I decided to live here that, unlike the apartment I viewed, this one would have entirely tiled floor. Not complaining mind you, it is the smartest thing in the world! Cooler (temperature speaking), so much easier to clean, and the added fun of sliding my way around in my handy wool socks (near-wipeouts being half the fun ladies and gentlefigs). One side effect that never occurred to me is the echoes. I have always dwelt in at least semi-carpeted places, and it’s just odd to be dwelling in a space that has the acoustics of a cave. I know that furniture will take care of some of this, but the soundscape will never resemble what I am used to in a living area. As of now, I do not mind this, but that could partially be because it is new and exciting. Everything is that way now. I felt like such a tourist earlier when, upon spying some type of unfamiliar fowl in one of the little ponds around the complex, I immediately took out my phone to take a video. To my delight, the fine lady had two lovely chicks happily playing in the water with her. There was also a small gray crane/heron calmly striding through the water around them. Again, I know this is probably a sight not unusual to locals, but I could not help being charmed and awed by this immediate wildlife so close to me. I know a gator or two is probably also lurking nearby, but even that is an “oo shiny!” reaction right now. Everything is so immediate, fresh, like that first shot of citrus smell when you peel an orange. Although new, I can’t help but feel like the cave is following me. It’s the sensation that every new thing I see has a reverberation that I recognize, an echo if you will. That lady fowl I saw smacked of the time I saw a mallard and his dame happily guiding their ducklings around the pond outside Prettyman. It’s not a lament of “Nothing new under the sun,” but rather a richer experience because it is layered. The newness is that moment when you call out into a cave, your voice released into the air, and then the echoes sing it back to you a thousandfold. I know I am young, but I already feel so rich and blessed in how often I experience that thousandfold song.


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