Nighttime is so strange here.

Last night I heard a dog yowling in pain, cat fights, and an air raid siren just like the ones out of WWII that made me wonder if I should duck under a table or toss on some camos and start scavenging for food and a good source of alcohol.

There is also of course the familiar sounds of car alarms going off, mopeds passing by, clock ticking, …MOSQUITO BUZZING smash… dammit-I missed. But there are so many stray dogs and cats that I could easily imagine that the dog was seriously injured, or the cats were fighting for their lives. Perhaps against a hungry stray dog, even. And then barking, barking, spreading in waves back and forth across the city, sounding much like two sets of Mel Brooks and Madeline Kahn arguing in the airport in High Anxiety.

Every once in a while, however, I hear sounds I can’t place. I’ve been ignoring those. Must be cats, I tell myself.

Despite the noise, I’ve been sleeping quite well. I am a New Yorker, born and (partly) bred, after all. This is all just a new lullaby to me, who grew up falling asleep to the soft music of sirens, alarms and various people shouting.

But next chance you get, hug your pets. Unless they’re fish, that might not go over so well.