In the front hall of our home stands a grandfather clock. This clock was my grandmother's, and has been mine for close to 20 years. It's a kit clock, built and purchased when I was very small, and probably not worth a lot to anyone but me. It chimes every 15 minutes, in the classic Big Ben sequence.
Anyone who has lived with a chiming clock will agree that, after a while, one simply doesn't hear the clock chime unless one wants to. Visitors don't have that same reaction; my two-year-old granddaughter is fascinated with the clock, and every 15 minutes it requires some comment by her - usually an enthusiastic "Tick Tock!"
The clock brings back many memories of my grandmother for me; for one of these I have a peculiar fondness. Every time I spent the night at my grandmother's as a child, I slept in a hide-a-bed in the living room. Right next to the clock. That chimed every 15 minutes. And believe me, I heard it.
You can imagine how well I slept. Not.
Fast forward some 30 years, and I'm telling the story to someone of trying to sleep next to the clock, and never succeeding. My grandmother, also in the room, finally asks me why I never said anything to her. "Sheila, I could have stopped the clock! It never ran right anyway!"
But then I'd have no story today, and probably not half the fondness I have for the clock now.
Which, by the way, runs perfectly. It just needs to be leveled. Grandma wasn't the most mechanical in the family.