Sleep was being kind of a jerk last night. I was dozing off then waking up an hour to an hour and a half later. Nothing I can’t handle, but hardly a good night’s sleep. I’m working from home today so I figured I could stay in bed a little longer than usual.
4:45am. I’m asleep. My beloved wife is asleep. My brilliant step kids are asleep…
…the new smoke/fire/carbon monoxide detection/alarm system we had installed last fall was not asleep. It was awake. Wide awake. It decided that the rest of us should be awake too. Queue the beeping and the blaring and the robot voice yelling, “Smoke! Evacuate!” We didn’t see any smoke, or smell any smoke, or see any fire or feel anything hot or out of the ordinary. It was saying smoke, not CO so it probably wasn’t some jerk of an invisible gas. Then while we were scrambling the alarms magically stopped.
I should point out that we have alarms in every room, as required by law, and they are all synced together so if one goes off they all go off. Cacophony is an understatement.
Jen called 911, we all went outside. A Methuen Police Officer pulls up. He waits with us. A minute later a Methuen Fire Engine pulls up. We tell them what’s up. They go in an inspect the place, including monitoring for carbon monoxide. They test the alarm, it seems to be working, then come out with an all clear. The alarm in our bedroom was registering smoke, but there was no sign of anything wrong. Maybe get an electrician in to take a look. Could it be the outflow from the CPAP machine? Maybe, but probably not.
We thank the emergency personnel for their help and they leave. We go back inside and…
…can you guess???
…can you see it coming???
The alarm goes off again. Then it stops. Then a few minutes later it goes off again. Wash, rinse, repeat. I pull the batteries out of the alarm in the bedroom, but it’s just a backup. It goes off again. I take it off the ceiling and try to unplug it, but the bastard won’t disconnect.
Call 911 again and ask what to do. They come back again and tell us to unplug it until we can get it checked out.
Let me rephrase that. They did NOT in anyway tell us to unplug it. They simply stated that if you yank on the wires they will pop out, and they only mentioned that when I told them I had tried it. These guys know their shit and are professional and in no way would they ever have done anything to imply that we should be without a fire alarm in our bedroom. Let me state that in no uncertain terms. These guys were freakin’ awesome to us and safety first. Got it?
So inside we go, with a second all clear. I yanked the wires, quite a bit harder than the first try, and they do indeed pop out. It’s been about four hours now and no new alarms. Jen went off to work, the kids went back to sleep, I sat in the office paranoid as all bloody hell and watched the last two episodes of Stranger Things and a couple of Archers. Eventually I felt sure that the alarm wasn’t going to go off again, and the house wasn’t going to spontaneously combust so I went to CVS for some caffeine. I’m gonna need it today.
Oh, and for the record… Stranger Things Season 3… go watch it. Like, right now.