News Detective: Emily’s Favorite Sounds

Emily, SNK’s intrepid reporter, describes her favorite sounds

I am particularly sensitive to sound. I’m a writer, and I write best when I can concentrate. That doesn’t always mean silence, but I’m picky. If someone is talking loudly on the phone near me, I can’t write. If the TV is on, I get distracted. Listening to music with words bothers me, too.

Emily enjoys some of her favorite sounds at a beach in the Bahamas.
David McLain/Aurora

On the other hand, I regularly take my laptop computer to cafes. I work best when there’s a perfect background balance of music, clinking dishes, and the hum of voices as people come, order coffee, and go. I’ve come to really enjoy these sounds of human activity, hearing people going about their daily lives and catching little snippets of conversation.

My most favorite sounds of all, though, are some of the sounds of nature. When I lived in California, my bedroom was so close to the beach, I could hear sea lions barking in the waves every night as I fell asleep. I still miss that.

I love camping next to a river. I love sleeping in a tent when it’s raining. I enjoy the silence of falling snow. I also really like the crunching sounds of stepping on dry leaves, snow, or thin sheets of ice over shallow puddles.

Now that I live in Minnesota, I don’t get to sleep outside nearly as much as I’d like. So, on a day-to-day basis, I look forward most to hearing the voices of my friends.

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