Tonight, I went with 5 other second year Nicholas students, to listen to frogs calling. Where we went, the homes are far between, trees stretch their spindly limbs into a sky scrambled with stars. When you listen to frogs, every sound becomes crystalline - every peep, croak, trill. The sharp timbre of dogs barking, the rush of a passing car overwhelms the senses. Even the vision fades. The world, normally awakening with spring color, is washed gray by night. We listened at 10 sites, from ponds where not even a house could be seen, to another pond where the homeowners called the sheriff on us (a group of young adults with two cars, standing stock-still at the edge of the road, is unusual in those parts), to a beaver-dammed stream, to a glassy lake where barred owls yelled at each other.
How often do we have the liberty to stand at the edge of a field, and just listen? This marvel was such a simple one - Piedmont frogs are neither rare nor secretive - and yet the distinctive roll of each voice and the intensity of the ritual eased my mind.
I have tried before to reconcile the parts of my life that seem completely distinct from one another. When would a business school student ever have the opportunity, or excuse, to stand at the end of a small pond in rural North Carolina, consider the stars and eggshell moon, and listen to the cacophony of life for long minutes? The names of the Spring Peepers or Pickerels, and their silly, sweet, lively calls are all meaningless in business. I don't think there is reconciliation.