It is Very Loud Here / by Alan Strathman

Things that didn't wake me up this morning: Roosters, chickens, goats, stray dogs, random people yelling at each other, the unbearable heat, mosquitoes.

The two lines above are from a FB post from one of my fellow PCVs (Peace Corps Volunteers) on her first morning of vacation back home. To this list let me make three personally-relevant additions:
1. the church bell, four doors down from my house, that rings for one full minute every Saturday at 5:00 AM,
2. the two dogs directly across the street from my bedroom window that bark, sometimes one, sometimes the other, usually both, at random but frequent intervals absolutely 24 hours a day (but of course its not their fault because they are both kept outside on short chains without ever being let off),
3. the bread car that drives ever-so-slowly through town every weekday at 6:00 AM, with horn blaring, notifying Laborians of the chance to buy fresh bread (think Good Humor [oh, sorry that's Humour] truck selling ice cream with light, fun jingle notifying happy-go-lucky children that ice cream is here).

My friend's post is one of two things that have recently reminded me how loud it is in my village specifically, and on the island, generally.  The other was taking a walk up one of the hills that surrounds the non-sea side of Laborie.  Houses are built up on the hills.  So one with money can either choose to live right on the beach, where there is less breeze and more noise or up on the hill where there is more breeze, less noise, and beautiful views but not instant access to the water. (If I stay and win the lottery, I'm building on a hill.) Anyway, I walked up a hill and around and around.  For much of the walk I could hear music, sadly often country and western, which is huge here, playing but then I walked down a weedy, gravel path toward a big house and halfway down the path stopped and noticed it was completely silent, save the sounds of nature.  I relished it for several minutes while a nearby goat stared me down.  

Though it is hard to tell from this photo, the houses on the land at the bottom right and then curving around up and to the left are all on hills.