For instance, the first winter we lived in Iowa I frequently heard cows lowing in the distance, particularly at night. I subconsciously, or maybe half-consciously, looked for cattle operations when driving outside of our little town, but I only ever found a hog farm.
One night, when the cows sounded particularly frantic, I wondered aloud about this deep mystery to Derek. He looked at me, perhaps to see if I was kidding, then informed me that those were snow mobiles we were hearing night after night, not cows. Not cows at all. Then he probably laughed at me, I don't really remember. I know I laughed at myself, because that is what you do when you mistake snow mobiles for cows, although it's not surprising my brain made this mistake- my growing-up place is marked by an excess of cows and a surfeit of snow-based recreational vehicles of any kind, because there is very little annual snowfall.
I'm not sure what pre-conceived notion my mind is grasping at when I hear a local daycare through the copse of trees that separates the daycare from our school bus stop, as I have never heard with my own ears a band of sea lions on the beach, just recordings of them on documentaries and on the internet. But the fact remains that those children sound eerily like a recording of sea lions playing on a loop.
Hmm. Maybe it's my hearing.
Although if it's school children that look like sea lions you're looking for, I'd advise you to drive by our local middle school around lunchtime, when mass quantities of adolescents are congregated outside on a batch of concrete and grass, and there is indeed barking and slapping and awkwardness-on-land galore. It's really a little sad to think of; at least the sea lions can slip back into the ocean to shed the awkwardness. Those middle schoolers are just kind of stuck, weird and cringe-inducing no matter what they do. They have to grow out of theirs one excruciating day at a time.
|This kind of grace not available to those in junior high.|
I'd better stop talking about middle schoolers lest I trigger my own flashbacks and induce nightmares tonight.