My first night in Guatemala City way back in the more innocent pre 9-11 century, I drifted off to sleep to the subtle rat-a-tat-tat of what I assumed was small arms fire. In the morning, I was informed that what I actually heard was someone's birthday being celebrated at 2:30AM by lighting fireworks outside their door. Since fireworks were and still are illegal for New Yorkers without the surname Gotti, distinguishing fireworks from bullets was not one of my acquired socialization skills. But after living in Guatemala for four years, I eventually got it.
So now I live on the South Side of Chicago. I have the beautiful blinking light of a police camera creating a disco in my living room. I live a block away from one of the most poorly managed private low income housing developments in the city. And it's summer time. And I hear...
Long live strange sounds in the night! Without it, urban life, rural life, jungle life would be too easy.