At work, we’re fortunate enough to have a courtyard that holds a 15 foot pyramidal fountain and a reflecting pool. Due to cost cutting measures, the fountain had been shut off for the last few years. This year, the fountain was turned on again, and has made an immense difference in the quality of the atmosphere around here.

On my way to my desk a couple of weeks ago, I turned and happened to see the first drops flowing down the pyramid, freezing the scene as a moment in my mind. I looked down at my watch and noted that it was 7:02. So last week, I came in a few minutes early, walked into the courtyard and waited for the moment to repeat itself.

The courtyard is dead quiet before the fountain goes on. There are no birds due to the plastic owls perched five stories above, and even though we are in the middle of a city, you can’t hear the traffic on the street. Generally, there are very few smokers out there at that time of the morning, and even if there are, the silence weighs on everyone out there. It’s like a theater or a library. There isn’t really any noise because the place itself is keeping you quiet.

Like clockwork, at 7:01, the pyramid started to rumble and fill. By 7:02, the first water spilled down the sides, and the sounds of rushing water filled the courtyard. At that point, the courtyard transformed from silent to serene.

Even though I look like an idiot out there, staring at the fountain and looking at my phone, having no excuse to smoke to keep me out there, it’s a simple moment to look forward to.

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