Saturday, March 10, 2012

Sounds in the Night...

I couldn't wait to get to bed last night.

The day was done--the half day before spring break, where the kids who had won the chance to be teachers for the day in our school auction were able to "rule the school," which, of course, meant complete chaos (in a fun, sweet way). Then the half day of planning with my partner, which turned into an extended time of planing interspersed with talking, talking, talking that lasted until 6:30. Then, out for drinks and dinner at a friend's house until 9:30.  Then home again, where my children were still up talking (every Friday night they all start out in our bed, which means lots of reminders before everyone finally winds down and falls asleep). Finally, a little tv with my husband, even though I could barely keep my eyes open.

At about 10:45, we went to bed. I cannot go to sleep until I read something, anything, so I opened up a well-worn book, one that I know practically by heart, so that I wouldn't be tempted to get so into the story that I stayed up (this has happened waaaay too many times!). And then I found myself reading the same lines again and again and having no idea what they even said, so I knew I had to go to sleep.

I dropped my book on the floor next to the bed, reached over my water cup to turn out the light, gave my husband a kiss, arranged my pillows just so, and luxuriated in being in bed with the knowledge that I had nothing to do on Saturday. Ahhh.

BEEEEEEEEEP! BEEEEEEEEEEP! BEEEEEEEEEEP! shrieked out piercingly all over the house, non-stop.

At first, I was so disoriented I thought it was my alarm clock, and then I realized it was the smoke detector.

No, not just a smoke detector, it was every single smoke detector in the house going off at the same time.

At 4:00 a.m.

My husband was already swinging his legs over the side to jump out of bed, and I shouted to him above the din, "Get Dan!"

Our youngest, in kindergarten, had had a fire safety presentation by the local fire fighters a few weeks ago, and has since been in some anxiety about the idea of a fire and of the smoke detectors going off. Now it was pretty much his worst fear happening (the smoke detectors that is, not a fire).

We barely got out of our room before Dan was running to us, in tears. Then the other two came running in, as the smoke detectors stopped blaring as suddenly as they had begun.

We put everyone back in bed and laid back down, still with adrenaline running through my body, and started getting comfortable again.


And we were out of bed again.

I had all the kids get in my bed, then went out to help Clint figure out how to make it stop. It was difficult though, because some of our ceilings are so high that we can't actually reach the things (we just moved into this rental house and don't even own a big ladder!). So when Clint figured out which one was the ringleader, instigating all the other smoke detectors to buckle under peer pressure, he couldn't reach it, even standing on our daughter's bed.

So we did the only thing that made sense. No, not beat it down with the broom handle (although that was tempting). We grabbed a chair from the hall, perched it precariously on the bed, and I held it "steady" while Clint wobbled around on top of it, wrenched the smoke detector off, and pulled the battery out.



The kids decided to all sleep in one room together (I just let them go), and we decided to deal with the rebellious detectors in the morning.

Interesting start to spring break...

1 comment:

  1. I've been wondering if you ever figured out what made them go off? Was it just an 'out of the blue' thing? I can imagine how tired you must have been at the end of your day, and how startling the sound in the middle of the night might have been, and how lovely it was to finally have silence again.