Wednesday, February 04, 2009

No Ding Dong, the Clock is Dead

As some of you know, I have the pleasure of living about 15 feet from Baden's gigantic clock tower. This clock tower dings 24/7 every 15 minutes. When I first moved in, I thought, surely they turn off the thing at midnight. But that was wishful thinking.

So after about a month of fitful sleep listening to the clock remind me every fifteen minutes that I was still awake, I suddenly stopped hearing it. I don't know if this was out of utter exhaustion or if I just got used to the midnight bangs, but the clock and I learned to be at peace with each other.

Well ok. I still feel like swearing at it sometimes at 3am, but nevertheless I count on it to get me places on time. For example, I always listen for it to ding two times at 8.30 so I don't miss my 8.38 train. It's never let me down. But last week I failed to hear my 8.30 ding and just managed to catch the train by mere seconds. Later I thought, either my hearing's really done in or the clock is broken.

But Swiss clocks don't just break. Do they? Granted this clock tower has been under construction since last February. I haven't been able to see the clock face in a year, but a little scaffolding never stopped a Swiss clock from its ability to ding and dong its way to creating anything less than a punctual population. Even I've adjusted to settling for just hearing the time instead of seeing it.

But now, a week after the near train miss, I realize that the clock really isn't dinging. Now if I had seen my neighbor in the last week or so, I'm sure she would have informed me of the poor clock's fate since she seems to enjoy construction schedules as much as I love chocolate. But I haven't seen her. I wonder how she's surviving without our trusty time machine. Not well, I'd imagine, since she's got 33 years on me living next to it.

But despite my lack of dings and dongs, it's not exactly quiet around here. Constant construction in the main square has been threatening my sanity since last February and another obnoxious Baden Carnival is just around the corner. Still, in this country, I'll take any reduction of noise I can get. Even if that means missing a few Swiss trains.


Michelle Glauser said...

I really liked this post. Good luck with the clock starting again.

Chantal said...

Thanks. I have a feeling it will be another whole re-adjustment. I'll keep you posted :)


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