Main Line Homes Blog


Are you listening? Tuning out the distractions!

No, this is not about listening to people and understanding what they are saying, although it could be. What I am talking about is are you mindful of all the sounds around you?

Path in the woodsAs I was walking yesterday I realized several times how quiet it was, just the breath of a wind through the trees and there really was very little wind. The occasional sound of bird song or the flap of a wing beat. 

When we are showing homes, people often look at room sizes, views and if the house is close to a major road or train line they mention if the home is quiet or noisy inside or out. We let those sounds drown out others.

But sound comes in several different levels. Listening to a radio program some time ago, it was talking about soundscapes and how they are changing. By recording the soundscapes scientists can discover the loss of certain birds from the area as their songs disappear from the soundscape. There are multiple different levels, sounds close to you, those further away and those further away still and then also at different pitches. We often don't stop, to just listen.

Maybe, if you sit quietly, and just listen depending on the time of year you will hear insects, a frog or two, bird song, woodpeckers tapping, people conversing, equipment in the house or yards around you, cars and trucks, distant planes way above you. The wind in the trees and the shrubs around you. Trees creaking from the wind.

It is really amazing just how much sound there is around you and what you can hear and how far away you can hear if you just sit quietly and listen. Our brains actually tune many of these sounds out so we can get on with our work. When we used to be hunter-gatherers listening was much more important.

Doing this you also realize you can tune certain noise out and hear other sounds from different levels of the soundscape around you. You can mentally drop out the traffic white noise, and specifically listen to insects or birds or the wind.

When a house sits in a quiet area we often say to clients how quiet it is, but we can also listen and point out what other levels of sound there are other than just the annoying noise of every day life even in an urban soundscape. Who knows what you might hear?

We live in suburbia, Tredyffrin Easttown, close to a major city, Philadelphia and often hear the hoot of owls, the bark of a fox, the rustle as the deer munch on the tulips and other plants close to the house. It is actually amazing how much rustling goes on in the woods around our house, squirrels, birds and all sorts of other animals. If you listen, you might also see.

Sound is important, to much noise can be overbearing and deafen you to what else is going on around you. We all need periods of calm and peace.

Give it a try, you may like it, and it may help you when you listen to people as well, to understand what they say may not be what they mean, they are just speaking on another level of the soundscape and you need to tune in to them and tune out the distractions around you. If you are looking for a real estate agent in the Tredyffrin Easttown area who can tune in to you and tune out the distractions contact Nick Vandekar, Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Selling the Main Line with Long & Foster Real Estate Inc., office 610-225-7400, cell or text 610-203-4543 email, website  is


If you are buying or selling on or around Tredyffrin Easttown or along the Main Line we can help you,  contact us or connect

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Comment balloon 34 commentsNick Vandekar, 610-203-4543 • March 25 2019 02:52PM
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