Unlikely silence

On March 13 Belgium came in lockdown after already some weeks of limited possibilities to work or to move around. Being retired one would think the restrictions for people going or not going to work and having to stay at home (in your own place) would not change much for that person.

I must say since restrictions in moving around the roads our house became very quiet and the noise from the planes seems to have disappeared high up in the skies. Because now it has become so quiet around the house, we sleep longer than previously. Only the alarm clock of one of our neighbours, she as a nurse having to go to work early, ringing at 6 a.m. awakes us for a moment. Afterwards, we just fall in sleep again, whilst the other days ‘BC’ (Before Corona) we kept hearing the busy National road behind our back garden (the N3  AachenLeuvenBrussels) and the motorways E40 (CalaisBrusselsKölnKatowice-KrakówKievDonetskBeyneuNukusKonye-Urgench- BukharaMerkiChaldavarAlmatyRidder) and E314 (LeuvenHasseltMaasmechelen- Bocholt-Aachen). In the early morning and from the early afternoon until early evening, in normal times, cars are piling up. Regularly alongside those motorways, I could walk with my dog faster than the cars would move.

Since a few weeks the lorries came to govern those roads again and at least for those truck drivers it is now a less stressing time, them being able to bring the goods from one place to another without too many difficulties and ‘not having to swear so much’. For a month now it looks like there are no rush hours existing any more.

E40 the longest European route more than 8,000 kilometres (4,971 miles) long, connecting Calais in France via Belgium, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Kyrgyzstan, with Ridder in Kazakhstan near the border with Russia and China.
In lockdown times at rush-hour on Sunday the 12th of April 2020.
Weird state of moments of empty lanes where otherwise the motorway sections are full of cars.
Bizarre toestand van momenten van lege rijvakken op de E40 te Leefdaal, waar anders de autostrade baanvakken vol met auto’s zijn. – Tijdens piekuur tijd op zondag 12 april 2020.

Incredible when looking at the streets and motorways, lots of them with such a  few moving vehicles that photographers find lots of opportunities to make beautiful shots of the ancient buildings and otherwise touristic attractions.

Because of the restriction of travelling, I can not go to the nearby city Brussels or to Leuven for taking pictures of the empty squares. Those living in Brugge (Bruges), Gent (Ghent)  and Antwerp are now able to shoot incredible nice photos of the beautiful houses and canals without the disturbing view of autos and people cruising.

It is striking how the animals in nature also get a breath of fresh air so that more birds can be seen and heard. We always have been please to see them around but this time we find more birds in our garden and see many more animals on the fields, seemingly not so afraid of human beings when we come along. Many rabbits looking in our eyes demanding what we come to do there.

Lege weg van Leefdaal naar Meerberg – Empty road from Leefdaal to Meerberg. 2020 April 12 Covid-19 lockdown.

It looks like the harrier also noticed there are much more animals moving around in the fields. Lovely to see him hovering in the air, before diving to catch prey. I do not know much about birds, but I have the impression this morning I got a Eurasian sparrowhawk seated in the bushes a few meters away from me who flew up to land a little further back, as my stationary figure seemed to be harmless to him.

It is also striking that the birdsong now falls in the air so much clearer, and brings us much nicer sounds than all that engine buzz.

Summit, now that I was writing this article and going for a walk this afternoon, there was now a bit more driving on the N3, even though it was not so bad. (Just now when I was thinking and writing about this amazing silence which has come over my village.)

Wherever you live, try to notice the silence and perhaps also the otherwise hidden life in nature. Perhaps you too shall notice that it looks like nature has received a sort of new birth.

Wishing you lovely sounds in an opening world of wonders.



Previous articles

Making deeper cuts than some terrorist attacks of the near past

Coronavirus on March 11 declared a global pandemic on March 31 affecting more than 177 countries

From the Old Box: Coughs and sneezes spread diseases

Staying at home saves lives


Additional reading

  1. Europe in Chaos for a Pandemic
  2. Using fears of the deadly coronavirus
  3. When 1 699 676 people worldwide are infected and the number of deaths had totalled 102 734 in 210 countries or territories
  4. According to Pew Most White Evangelicals Don’t Think COVID-19 is a Medical Crisis
  5. Catholics facing a totally different Holy Week
  6. Observance of the Lord’s Evening Meal

About Marcus Ampe

Retired dancer, choreographer, choreologist Founder of the Dance impresario office and archive: Danscontact-Dansarchief plus the Association for Bible scholars, the Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" and "From Guestwriters" and creator of the site "Messiah for all". - Gepensioneerd danser, choreograaf, choreoloog. Stichter van Danscontact-Dansarchief plus van de Vereniging voor Bijbelvorsers, de Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" en "From Guestwriters" en maker van de site "Messiah for all".
This entry was posted in Crisis, Dagboek = Diary, Environment and Ecology, History, News and Politics, Visuals (Video, Photo, Cartoon), Warning, Welfare and Health, World and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Unlikely silence

  1. Andrew James Chandler says:

    Reblogged this on Andrew James.


  2. Pingback: Kort overzicht Corona gebeuren in België (januari – begin juni 2020) | From guestwriters

  3. Pingback: Optimism or pessimism: Which is better for you? | From guestwriters

  4. Pingback: Emerging voices from choked society | Marcus Ampe's Space

Feel free to react - Voel vrij om te reageren

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.