My house apparently sits directly under the flight path from Baton Rouge (our state capital) to the oil-challenged Louisiana Gulf Coast. This year, along with the usual summertime sounds of chirping birds and buzzing insects, we regularly hear the whup-whup-whup of helicopters overhead. I don’t know whether the frequent flyers are government officials or news reporters, only that so many of them fly over each day that Butch and Kadi no longer pay the slightest attention to them.
Of course, this isn’t the dogs’ first exposure to the whirlybirds. The many helicopters that flew overhead during hurricanes Katrina (2005) and Gustav (2008) may have desensitized them to the sound.
To me, though, that sound is still a little unsettling, especially when two or more helicopters are traveling together. It isn't the noise that bothers me; they fly high enough to keep from creating a disturbance. It's the sound itself. Somehow, in my mind, the clacking of those propellors has morphed into an aural symbol of suffering and urgency, and I feel just a little bit anxious every time I hear it.
It’s been a rough five years here in Southeast Louisiana.