Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Beep Beep

Danno went to Vegas last weekend. This is not unusual as we do take separate trips on occasion. He usually goes to Las Vegas alone because I HATE Vegas. HATE HATE HATE it. And he does not accompany me on the camping/birdwatching trips that I usually take with Trillium.  We're both comfortable with this travel arrangement, and we do take vacations together.

The trouble I have with Danno going out of town is that something annoying or stressful inevitably happens to me while he's gone. There was one year I could not go on family vacation because I had a new job. That was the year his 2 year old goldfish decided to die; slowly. I was stressed with the new job and it was difficult watching his fish die, and watching the other fish in the tank nibbling on the sick fish on occasion. Danno told me to go ahead and euthanize the dying fish and I was a blubbering mess putting that poor thing out of its misery.

Then there was the year my new computer gave me the blue screen of death. I wanted to restart the computer, but when I accidentally hit "hibernate" instead of "restart", I got the blue screen and it would not start. I called the service hotline, and when they could not help me, I freaked out. Freaked out. I think I was on the phone with Dan almost as much as I was with the service center. This story does have a happy ending; I had a service tech that did not want to give up on my computer. My original call was nearly an hour of failed troubleshooting, but the tech told me he was going to do a little research and call me back. He called the next day with the fix for my computer woes. Needless to say, that was a 48 hour roller coaster ride of emotion.

Danno left Thursday morning and the first few days was filled with the usual routine of work, housework, relaxing in the evening and sleeping. The trouble began late Saturday night. I went to bed early because I had to get up 4am the next morning. Sometime after midnight, one of the smoke alarms in the house began the low battery warning beeps. I decided I would look at the smoke alarm after work. However, in my sleepy state, I failed to remember that we had 6 smoke alarms and 2 carbon monoxide alarms. I think the number of smoke alarms we have is overkill, but the house alarm company installed all of them.

When I returned home, I went to the alarm in the hallway and found it took 123A batteries, which we did not have. Beep beep. I replaced the batteries in the basement alarm, but the sound persisted. Beep beep.  I went upstairs and looked at the carbon monxide alarm and replaced those batteries. Beep beep. Which one of those damn things was low on battery power? Beep beep. By now the beeps were beginning to grate on my nerves and I was throwing old batteries on the floor.  I walked through the house, pausing under each alarm, but each one of them was silent. But somewhere in the house, the beeps persisted. The only 2 alarms that were untouched was the basement carbon monoxide detector and the hallway smoke alarm that needed the 123A batteries.  I went downstairs to remove and examine the carbon monoxide detector. Unlike the detector in the hallway, this one was wired to the ceiling and did not seem to have batteries .

Frustration continued to mount. It was late in the afternoon and I was tired. I did not want to get back in my car and go to the store for batteries, but it looked like that was my only choice. I went to the supermarket, and much to my chagrin, they did not have the 123A batteries I needed. With a big sigh, I got back into my car and drove to Office Max. Luckily they had what I needed and I headed back home. I replaced the batteries in the hall alarm, and guess what? Beep beep. What.The.Hell.? I got online and researched the carbon monoxide detector that appeared not to need batteries. My original observation was correct, the detector was indeed wired to the ceiling. What alarm did I miss?

Beep beep. Every 30 seconds, all night long. Beep beep. Frustration turned into resignation. Danno would be home the following evening. I could put up with the beeps until then, right? Beep beep. By Sunday night, I was able to more-or-less tune out the noise. I went to work early Monday morning and didn't return home until mid-afternoon. Beep beep. Danno texted me and told me his flight was delayed and he wasn't sure when he would be returning home. That was fine. I could now deal with the persistent noise.

Danno returned home close to midnight. He went into one of the spare rooms and silence descended within 2 minutes.

"Wait, there was an alarm in there? I didn't even think to check in there!" I exclaimed.

"Uhhh yeah. " He replied.


"I noticed there were batteries all over the floor. I'm kinda glad I wasn't here."

If you were here Danno, this would not have happened. I swear the electronic devices don't act up until he is gone. I'm convinced the electronics smell my fear and act on it when they know a solution to their trouble will not be immediate. They know who the boss is, and it surely isn't me.

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