Sep 29, 2010

Stop the Noise!

9/29/2010 — cori

You know how sometimes things happen and they aren't funny at the time but people say you'll look back one day and laugh about that? Yeah, well, something happened this morning and we still haven't gotten to the 'laughing about it' stage quite yet. It was a little traumatic. It was very dramatic. It was also very loud.

Let's set the scene: It is a peaceful, quiet, still-dark-out, early morning. My alarm went off at 6am and I made it out of bed a little after. We slept with the windows open since the low dipped into the 50's and the fresh night/early morning air always smells so pretty. It is still very dark outside at this time. I am normally the only one up. Actually, I lie. Ninja and I are both awake - she's eating greedily at her bowl and I'm enjoying my quiet time. The only light on in the house is in the kitchen, where I am.

I sit down to read and hear a random beeping noise. I immediately register that noise to be our idiotic alarm system. It has some type of short. Every so many days we have to 'reset' it. By that I mean, hit the # or * button to stop the random quiet beeps and still allow it to work normally. Thankfully, our system is not monitored. This is a key point of the story. Also important to note is that my husband is not an electrician.

The alarm pad in is the utility room across the hall from Gavin's room. I thought I'd go rescue him from the incessant beeping emanating from 10 feet from his head. That sound would have kept me awake all night but he is a sound sleeper. So as not to wake up my child, I did not turn any lights on. I walked into the (pitch black) utility room and just pushed the button like I always do.

Did I mention it was dark? Apparently I didn't hit the right button because out of nowhere a fog horn type siren started blaring throughout the entire house. I panicked and started hitting all the buttons on the key pad. Nothing stopped the noise. Noise is too placid a word, imagine the sound a nuclear bomb raid siren might make or an F-16 jet flying through your house. Imagine a sound that makes your heart want to jump out of your chest and makes you instantly start sweating and loosing all ability to think clearly. That type of "noise".

It seemed like an eternity before Chuck raced to my rescue. I'm still in the dark hitting buttons and he shows up and starts hitting some more. I explain my pathetic mistake to him amidst the screaming siren. He runs upstairs to the main controls for the alarm system and can't open the darn box. It needs a key! What a huge design oversight, I'd just like to add. Like we can find a key under such duress!

The very first thing that popped into my head was, "Oh GREAT! The windows are all open and we're going to wake all our neighbors up." I wanted to go close all the windows. Is this a rational thinking pattern? Then I had visions of a firetruck and 5 squad cars, lights flashing, sirens mimicking the sounds emanating from my house, pull up outside and aim a spot light at our house. I HATE drawing attention to myself but at the moment I felt as though I was pulling a huge stunt to do just that. The only thing I could think of was: stop the noise!!!

Thus, you can now understand what I did next. I left Chuck to fend for himself in the closet with the locked box and I ran, grabbed a chair and a pillow (I was careful as to which color - why I even care, I have no idea), raced to the hallway where the noise was screaming from and pushed the pillow onto the box to try to stifle the nuclear siren sound. The box is located in the upstairs hallway on the ceiling. I am now standing on the chair, holding a brown pillow over a box on the ceiling trying to muffle the 100 firetruck sounding sirens blaring into the still, early-morning air. Something is wrong with this picture.

Chuck finds me in the hallway shushing the alarm and I'm trying to tell him that I think we should either 1. call the fire department (but how do you explain that it's not a fire emergency on the phone with a noise that loud in the background?) or 2. pull that noisy box off the ceiling and disconnect the wires. He votes for the last option and prays we don't need to resort to the first option. My chair comes in handy as he uses it to pry that thing off the ceiling and just start pulling wires. I felt like we were a bomb squad team trying to diffuse a bomb. Actually, he was doing all the work, I was just the idea generator, the one who caused the entire ruckus and the one who felt like a heel at the moment. Things were not looking good for me to have a productive quiet time this morning.

Mercifully, 10-15 minutes later the incessant noise stopped when Chuck yanked the right wire out of something. Finally, we could breathe again. Ahhh....quiet. I am hyper-sensitive to noise this just made me want to go stick my head in the sand somewhere.

All I could do was whimper a pathetic, "I'm so sorry everybody. I think I hit the wrong button." Do ya think?! All I wanted to do was make it quiet so everybody could sleep in nice and soundly. I achieved the exact opposite.

Meanwhile, Chloe is in tears in our room. She thought there was a fire and rightly so since the loudest fire alarm in the history of fire alarms was going off right outside her door. Bennett was dazed and confused. He thought there was a burglar in the house. Gavin didn't even bother to get out of bed...he said later that he thought that if it was important, we'd come get him. The dog was too scared to eat and she was hiding in our room with Chloe. Boy, did I have some explaining and apologizing to do. And all of this because I only wanted to stop an irritating little noise.

Thankfully, none of our neighbors heard a thing (or at least never told us they did) or came knocking on our door to complain. No squad cars or firetruck showed up. Everyone just went back to doing their own thing. Chloe and Bennett got in my bed. Chuck got ready for work. I went back downstairs to resume my 'quiet time' and Gavin remained inconspicuous in his room.

You know you're in for a great day when it starts off like that!

I have had this twitch in my left eye all day. Seriously, I am not making this up, I really do. I wonder if it's related?

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