Weekends in Savannah are normally not silent. Amid the tourists and locals, it is most often an active city. Not in the same way as New York City. In New York, the noise is much more irritating, including the constant horn blowing of cabbies, and Brooklyn accents. In Savannah, it is a more silent sort of constant noise. The hooves of the horses are a rhythmic drumbeat on the cobblestone. The bells of the trollies are a pleasant call to view the city. The tolling of the church bells that tell us the time, even if though we did not ask.
When I took this picture earlier this year, it was on a Sunday afternoon in the late autumn – just before the coldest winter in some time was about to hit. It was a silent Sunday….and I was wandering around downtown, thrilled with my incompetent self, because I had finally figured out how to take black and white photos with my digital Nikon Coolpix camera. This is by the Lucas Theater…..and there were not many people strolling about; in spite of sunshine, it was below normal temperatures, and the silent envelope around me was becoming eerie.
Even the shadows of the palm trees were silent – one usually hears the rustling of the wind in the palms, but on this silent Sunday, the cold seemed to be preventing the wind from blowing off the Savannah River in between the buildings and shaking the palms about…….and it certainly was not blowing through the old oaks peppered with Spanish Moss. Here, I was fully expecting Rod Serling to emerge from the inside of the Lucas, commanding me to “Imagine, if you will……..”.
Since this picture, the city saw it’s first snow in 18 years……….and as of today, the bitter cold has not lost it’s grip on Savannah. A certain silent hold is still, in my own opinion, over the area – I feel like the life blood has frozen us into silence – but I am hopeful in my knowledge that it is temporary. I know other areas have it worse – up north, it is sub zero. I am hopeful that once March hits, we will have pulled out of the silent scenery of the winter, and that St. Patrick’s Day will once again bring back the quiet noise that is this city. Not the NYC noise……but the easy living noise that is a much more pleasant form of silent – maybe a white silent? Or white noise?…….the one that still indicates an upbeat pulse, but easy way of life that is Savannah. The dancing of the palms and the oaks filled with the Spanish Moss in the much welcomed breezes off the water. The silent noise that is this charmed and charming place.
In spite of the cold of now, and in spite of the oppressive heat of summer, I am glad that I am here.