There’s something to be said about the simple things, the small things, the seemingly insignificant things that wallpaper our lives without our permission. Things that just hang there in the air, dance around us, jump, dive, dip or whip past fast. In that case, I think there’s something to be said about train whistles & church bells. Every town & city across the USA has its very own set. They are kind of patriotic even, old-fashioned, charming & sweet.
Train whistles & church bells are timeless, ageless, they’re strung through every cool storybook we know. They are all-season, all-terrain & stay steadfast through thick & thin. They spell an air of activity or adventure. They echo the quaint connectedness we all have to the community, to people, places & things. They make us feel included, not forgotten, & a part of something larger than ourselves. Train whistles & church bells, like family… they are cozy, nostalgic, friendly & endearing. They let you know that you are somewhere safe amidst some kind of civilized folk, in a place where you can cop a sandwich, grace a bench & marvel at birds.
Train whistles & church bells… like a love affair in the air, where you find one, will be the other, they are kinda inseparable if ya think about it. Where there is a long freight train whistle passing through midnight… the next day there is a church bell that tolls 12 times at noon. At the edge of town under the big shade tree, that old Lutheran church still stands & lets ya know it is indeed lunchtime. The ghost of that old midnight train to Georgia still glows every time a heavy metal passerby looms on the stateline. Train whistles & church bells aren’t going away any time soon, they are the living archive of memories still alive. They go hand in hand, arm in arm, cheek to cheek like a tango of sorts through the halls of yesteryear, today & tomorrow all rolled up in a resounding stream of consciousness that doesn’t discriminate. Train whistles & church bells are the one thing that we can all hear ring through the air any time, anywhere & we are instantly HOME.
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