By Anne Budden
When I am not in the office at NB-Hearing you will find me on a mountain either hiking or mountain biking. Exercise and getting out in nature is my daily dose of serotonin. It is in nature where I experience most of my favourite sounds. Sounds of birds, waterfalls, rustling leaves and the soft “hum” of nature.
A few years ago, I hiked the Whale Trail in the De Hoop Nature Reserve. I would wake up to watch the sunrise with the sound of waves crashing. Whilst hiking for 7 hours to the next hut I would listen to the different calls of 260 species of birds which inhabit the nature reserve. The sound of my hiking boots as they hit the gravel with each step became the melody to my thoughts. After a long day of hiking I would sit and listen to the crackling fire as my dinner cooked.
Each day the sounds of nature differed. On the third day of the hike it poured. I enjoyed listening to the “hiss” of rain hit the Cape Floral Kingdom. When life gets busy these are the sounds I favour as they help me relax and re-focus.
I have noticed that I enjoy a quieter life. My hearing allows me to experience serenity through sound.
Losing hearing can mean the loss of soft sounds and of high-pitched sounds. These are the frequencies which are important to hear the call of birds and the rustling of leaves which are some of my favourite sounds.