A Resident’s Perspective – Noise vs. Sound

Written by Panorama resident, Sandy Bush. July 2014

There is a phenomenon around Panorama relating to noise. So, I thought I’d explore some thoughts on noise versus sound. Our previous community was a weekend getaway type development and so the weekends were full of visitors, cars, and general hubbub. The week days were pretty quiet.

We now know what our neighbors experienced during the re-doing and remodel of our lovely home on Woodland Loop. This happens during the working week. Everyone at Panorama has had a neighbor’s duplex or home across the street essentially torn down and refurbished from the ground up including insulation! Concrete has been broken up with jack hammers, and new patios and driveways poured afterward. The thumping machine that compacts soil/earth before the concrete is laid can be amazingly loud and reverberating. Once that is all accomplished, the siding and roofing noises are much less intrusive. The results are always pleasing and welcomed by the new residents moving in, as well as neighbors in the area.

Another real noise comes from fly-overs of helicopters and such from sheriff/rescue or the military. This activity has not been a negative for us, as it is sporadic and doesn’t signal abalone divers in trouble like the helicopters we watched/heard at our coastal home. Having the military base near Panorama does impact traffic, but I know many of our residents are military retirees and generally the base is a plus for us in Lacey.

Some neighborhoods have had more than one of these projects in their vicinity. Most experience it once in awhile. There is an added noise environment that comes with the riding mowers and the leaf/detritus blowers. To my mind, this seems a luxury on Fridays to have our driveway and patios blown free of pine needles from our wonderful towering Doug firs and large magnolia tree. Another noise comes from our yard fellow walking on the roof to blow needles out of the eaves. This activity alerts our cats who always look up. In our previous home, you needed to remove the needles off the roof for fire safety and that was a chore! It surely is a treat to have this routinely done for us, instead of doing it ourselves!


However, our home experiences wonderful sound as well. The nights here are so very quiet and we can hear the AMTRAK trains about 4 miles to our southeast as they blow at crossings during the night. The rain also gives us a pleasing relaxing sound on the roof and the overhangs. Birds that waken at dawn (or earlier) are clearly heard going about their daily business. Another sound is when pine cones drop on the roof causing the cats to wonder if it is that big crow, squirrel or something else fun to watch. While the I-5 freeway is only a mile away, sometimes the susurration sounds almost like the ocean sound which we miss now and then. Being on a loop on campus, we don’t get a lot of through traffic, so the quiet is very much appreciated.

There is an amazing amount of sound when you get out into the forest or along our near walking paths and trails. Things rustle, chirp, and call. Wind and even slight breezes create lovely sound in trees. Perceptions of noise and sound vary widely depending on our moods and I find one person’s noise is often just perceived as sound by another.

We are finding Panorama maintenance and improvements going on all the time. This is such a plus when you consider what places look like without all the continual care and enhancement. We can ignore the noise and enjoy the sounds that we have grown to love here.

Sandy Bio

2 thoughts on “A Resident’s Perspective – Noise vs. Sound

  1. I will have to remember to read this lovely post when the construction noises begin at 7:30 a.m. on Beta across from the yard on Marina! Though my brain knows every good reason for this, my feelings don’t quite reach that level at such an early hour.
    Nice comments, Sandy — see you soon!

  2. Sandy,

    Hi. My husband and I are considering Panorama. I read your blog and was hoping you might chat via e-mail. We too, love wild things and we are struggling to find a CCRC that meets those needs. We now live on a 68 acre farm and cherish the natural world around us. To give that up feels so distressing yet our life on the farm is not sustainable as we age. I would love to hear your sense of Panorama and how it fills your longing for wilder places. Thanks so much.

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