Silence in the Morning

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Silence in the Morning

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At the beginning of the pandemic, I was working at a hotel on a US Military base in Stuttgart Germany where I typically worked the overnight shift. As such, my commute home in the mornings was usually the noisiest part of my day. I would often pass by the local bakery on my way home, one of the busiest places in town in the morning. I would hear the sounds of the shuffling of feet of the people in line, the clink of coins on the counter, the crinkle of paper bags filled with the daily bread the Germans would buy or the pastries they would eat for lunch, and the whine of the coffee machine for their morning coffee. In the background was the constant droning of the morning rush hour traffic. After the lockdown, when the German government shut down businesses, I had to continue working as the military converted the hotel I worked at into a quarantine facility. I continued with my overnight shifts and my commute home in the mornings while everyone else stayed home. What struck me the most about my new commute home was the silence. The utter lack of noise was practically oppressive. I could close my eyes and the only difference with the dead of night was the warmth of the sun beating on my skin. What was once the noisiest part of my day was now the quietest.

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text story

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This item was submitted on February 4, 2022 by Zachary Rady using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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