I disagree with George Bailey. It’s not anchor chains, plane motors or train whistles. Even Uncle Billy got it wrong. It’s not “breakfast is served,” “lunch is served,” or “dinner is served.”
No, “the most exciting sound in the world” is a screen door.
Not a combination door with an automatic closer, but an old wooden screen door with a metal spring that goes “skritch skritch stretch” when it opens, and “wham” when it slams.
It’ll take you back. Back to your youth. Even back to your childhood when you lived in the country. With only a screen door standing between you and a carefree morning in the woods with your brother or your friends.
So when I built an art studio in my back yard, it had to have a screen door. To keep the mosquitos and flies out, of course; to prevent the cats from pooping in the dirt of my dioramas; but mostly so I could slam it.
The house number on my screen door is 6708, and it’s painted an old 1950’s pink. I got my screen door from the architectural salvage store. Maybe some day somebody will come to visit, and they’ll say, “Hey, I grew up at 6708 Such and Such a street. Our screen door was pink.” Then they’ll open it and let it slam.
I’ll turn away politely and let them enjoy the fountain of youth again.
Would you like to hear it?
“. . . then his flesh is renewed like a child’s; it is restored as in the days of his youth.”
Elihu in Job 33:25 (NIV)