Silence isn’t golden. Silence is the deep, velvety blackness of the early morning. At no time are you more aware of the depth of that silence and how easily broken it is than when you’re going through your usual morning routine without waking up the person in the next room. You become intensely aware of just how much noise you make.
The door hinges creak. The latch snapping into place sounds like a gunshot.
The toilet flush is a cannonade.
The shower isn’t merely running water; it’s a thundering cataract, a waterfall of immense proportions. Adjusting the temperature, moving it from scalding to lukewarm to a final reasonable medium only intensifies the crash.
Even the steam seems to make noise as clouds of it pound the walls.
The soap squeaks in your hands like a rabbit in a poacher’s trap.
The shampoo and conditioner bottles burp out their liquid allotments.
Halfway through you realize you’re singing Duran Duran’s “The Reflex” at the top of your lungs.
Old habits are hard to break.
The faucet creaks as you turn off the shower. Water floods from the now open tap with the sound of an angry river.
After the rush even the stillness seems loud.
The activity of drying off brings the noise level down, a quiet dance with a thick terrycloth veil.
The toothpaste cap twists off with only a gentle sigh.
As the loud ratchet sound of you brushing your teeth fills the room you realize those post-shower moments of silence were just long enough that a person might be able to go back to sleep.
More silence follows. It’s blissful. You feel peace spread through the house you’ve disturbed.
Then the electric razor snaps into action, a chainsaw felling the hairy seedlings that have sprouted from your face over the past day. In the harsh glare of the bathroom bulb you wipe away the five a.m. shadow and you’re racked with guilt for breaking everyone else’s hibernation.
Sound familiar? If so I’m giving you a chance to get in on the ground floor of my latest invention: the sound-proof bathroom!