We have many many sounds in the city, some unique and some we share with our suburban and country brethren. For those whose apartments face the street, there is the unabated sound of street traffic, less or more depending on where one faces and the time of day. There are also birds, dogs barking or the occasional screams and shouts of children at play. At night there is the sound of taxis dropping off passengers - usually identifiable by the longer time between opening and closing of doors and the conversations that sometimes ensue between passengers and driver. There is the walk of the lone and confident woman with every step of her hard heels clearly audible.
Then there is the occasional late night revelry, screaming or fighting of the severely inebriated. The sounds of these individuals getting into vehicles is not a pleasant prospect. The vehicle often jettisons away with squealing tires.
In the early morning we have the trumpeting of urban Elephants, i.e. garbage trucks, and the crunching and groaning of debris caught in their hydraulic tusks.
In the case of new, substantial snow, there are giveaway sounds - the reduced frequency of cars, the telltale echo of snow shovels and the unmistakable grind of the snowplow against the pavement. In the event of rain, I can hear the spray of water against tires and the roadway.
I have windows facing a park which I have featured in the four seasons: Spring (Enchanted April), Signs of Summer, Fall (Wood, Glass, Brass and Trees), and Winter (White By Design 2). In the mornings, however, I often rise before sunrise and immediately go to my laptop, typically without even looking out the window. Instead I rely on the sounds of the city. - perhaps for any number of reasons, including a growing reliance on the Internet and also being out of tune with the outdoors and nature from living in such a high urbanized environment. This morning I had no idea we had another in a series of snowstorms until I heard a snow shovel.
On an Apple computer the F4 key immediately displays the dashboard, a group of widgets which can be custom configured. I currently have mine to include the weather which displays the current conditions and the week's weather forecast. I can see if the sun is shining without turning around.
But not everything can be experienced through the Internet, the F4 key or even the sounds of the city. You've got to look out your window if you want to see the snow and you have to step into the streets and follow the trumpeting if you want to see Urban Elephants and their Hydraulic Tusks :)