Monday, January 11, 2010

It Must Have Been Monday

It went down like this:

Super Hubby boards a plane Saturday morning for a business meeting in Boston on Monday.

I manage a fairly normal day with The Little so long as you don't count the crayon on his Holztiger toys, the water logged and soggy dog food, the land lines flaking out on me, the cell phone disappearing, the broken dish on the ceramic tile floor, and the barfy doggy surprise in the corner. Normal day, right?

And last night as The Little and I lay down to sleep I had visions of sugar plumbs dancing in my head. Well, ok...not sugar plumbs so much as a SOLID nights sleep on our ginormous bed - just the toddler and I sprawled out.

And then midnight-thirty rolls around. And I'm dreaming that I'm in a lovely forest meditating. I've just entered this moment of complete and total zen when a small, noisily chirping bird decides to land on my shoulder. And she won't stop chirping. Chirp, Chirp, CHIRP!

What?! There 3 birds now. Flying all around me. Chirping. Sometimes the chirping is loud, sometimes its soft. Sometimes it's close, sometimes it's far, far away. And my total blissful moment of zen is ruined. I get up and I'm trying to catch these silly birds with my hands. I'm yelling at them. Profanities that would make a sailor blush.

I sit upright. Fully awake now. Disoriented I look around the bedroom. The Little is still sound asleep beside me dreaming blissfully of puppy dogs and mama milk. I look at the clock. 12:30. Just as I start to lay back down I hear it. CHIRP!!!!


It takes me a moment to realize that the chirping is our smoke detector. You know...the one way up high on on cathedral ceiling.

You can see the slope of that blasted ceiling here:
See how tall it gets? get's even taller than the picture shows.

I stand up. There is no way in heck I can reach that smoke detector. Even if I had a ladder tall enough, I'm still recovering from a back injury. I don't trust my balance. I walk out into the hall, turn on the light and decide, just in case it isn't the battery like I think it is that I'll check and make sure we don't have a firestorm brewing someplace. The chirping calls to me from down the hall. From the guestroom, from the living room. They're EVERYWHERE. Every single smoker detector in the house is chirping. Crap.

I forgot they were hardwired into the house. When something goes wrong with one, they all go bad. I wonder if I disconnect one, will it send the others into a frenzy? Will they go from chirping to full out sirens? I just don't know. I decide to call Super Hubby. At 3:30am Boston time.

Only...and did I mention this part? Our phones are messed up. The landlines won't place a call. The cell phone has been hidden by The Little. I give a little frantic giggle and then set about trying to unplug our landlines from the weird Vonage modem thingy and reset them. After about 5 minutes ripe with even more swearing I manage to fix them. I am a technological genius! Computer companies and phone companies take note: I am for hire.

I dial Super Hubby's phone. No answer. I dial again. No answer. And then I remember....not only is my phone missing, but so is his. And it has been for several weeks. He.Went.To.Boston.Without.A.Phone. I look up the hotel and call the front desk. I speak to someone named Raj. He places my call. My husband doesn't pick up. I call Raj back and ask him to place the call again. Raj is super cheerful. Way too cheerful for 3:30am.

Super Hubby picks up this time. He's as equally unhelpful as he is tired. He tells me to call our neighbor Rob or to call the fire department. I decide to call Rob. If the firetrucks come blazing in I'll wake up the whole neighborhood, instead of just one neighbor.

So Rob and I go around my total disaster of a house trying to figure out which smoke detector it is that's making the others go off. We determine that we just don't know. Rob proceeds to remove all the smoke detectors from the ceiling. They keep chirping. He removes the batteries. THEY KEEP CHIRPING!!!! He asks me if I have a ladder for the smoke detector in the bedroom.

Of course we don't.

He heads home to grab his gigantic ladder, drags it up the stairs, climbs up and removes the chirping annoyance. My son sleeps blissfully through the entire thing. We remove the battery. It too keeps chirping. We decide they must hold a charge for a bit. As we walk down the hall we hear yet ANOTHER chirp.

It's the carbon monoxide detector. What are the chances that every single battery would die in one night? Unbelievable. So we test the battery to make sure I'm not going to die in my sleep. It's dead. I take 6 chirping smoke detectors and 1 chirping carbon monoxide detector downstairs and into the garage where I dump them unceremoniously in a pile.

I thank my wonderful neighbor profusely and bid him goodnight. I call Raj back for good measure and ask to be connected to room 413 again. He cheerfully complies. I inform Super Hubby that all is well and that I hope we don't have a fire before he gets home because I have no smoke detectors left in the house.

And then I go to bed. Finally.

And as I lay there in bed I think of this classic Friends clip. Enjoy!


Yours in sleep deprivation,

Simple Mama


  1. We have totally experienced that except it went on (well, off and on) for months. That's right, months. At first it was just once every 12 hours or so, then every 8, then every 4 hours when it was finally chirping every 15 min I seriously thought I might lose my mind so I called the electrician. Then we found out that the hundreds of $$ we spent replacing all the 9V backup batteries in our hardwired fire alarms were totally wasted (as well as the $90 to the electrician) as the problem was our plug-in carbon monoxide detector. I promptly threw that thing away, and we've had not a single chirp since. Good luck on a silent night tonight. :)

  2. Now that's a nightmare . . . only I'm laughing (please forgive me, I can't help it). But what a strange thing to have happen, but if it's going to happen, of course it would be when you're home alone.

  3. What a pain )but couldn't help laughing)! It's sod's law though that these things happen when we're home alone, or in the middle of the night. May you have silent nights from now on!

  4. Don't you just love how home crises seem to always come when hubby is away. ;) I'm at my mother's now because my hubby got our truck stuck in the iced over creek before leaving for business. It just ain't safe with little ones in a holler and no transportation. lol Glad you have a good neighbor!

  5. Oh No! something like this happened to me, in a small apartment and I had no 'other' to call. Not wanting to wake the sleeping firemen in case they had a real emergency to deal with I called the police station ... Hmmm.. good thinking there by my sleepy, beep invaded brain ... I bet they had a good laugh at the station that night. I can't imagine how you handled multiples of it.