Wednesday, April 13, 2016

We used to live in the Windy City ...

"I just blew in from the windy city.
The windy city is mighty pretty,
But they ain't got what we got, no sirree."

~ from Calamity Jane 

When we first moved in, we heard what sounded like someone practicing a flute or a recorder nearby. We thought for a while it was our downstairs neighbor and that she wasn't very skilled. Then we realized it was not a human being but an aeolian wind harp. Sort of like wind chimes, but instead of metal bits clanging together, hollow tubes whistle when the wind blows through and around them. Again we assumed it was the apartment below us, in part because of the Tibetan prayer flags flapping on their balcony.

The sound is only apparent when the wind is really blowing and we quickly got used to its rare appearance.

A few weeks later, as I was walking down the sidewalk by American Parkway, I looked over at our apartment and tried to figure out where the harp was. It turned out not to be on the balcony downstairs but on the balcony of an apartment on our floor but two doors down. That balcony also had Tibetan prayer flags, so at least we were in the ballpark with our assumptions. 

The thing itself looks like a simplified miniature version of this:

We know the people who live in both apartments and often run into them when they are out walking their dogs. None of us have never mentioned the wind harp. I wonder, though, that the sound doesn't set dogs to howling when it hits the higher registers. Our building is full of dogs. But our apartment is actually rather quiet. We almost never hear a dog barking when we are in the apartment, although we do when we are out in the hallways.

Of course, when the weather gets warmer -- it will get warmer, it will, it will! -- and we open windows, things may get a bit noisier.

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