It was touch and go with my sanity while the beeping siege took two days to figure out. If you want to drive someone absolutely nuts, hiding a beeping object will just about do the trick.
After I last posted, I realized it was going to take my full attention and sharp mental (ha!) skills to get the job done and find this culprit.
With Abi in my arms, I situated the chair throughout the house, waited ten or so minutes, and when the beep came, and it was not nearby, I crossed that spot off my list.
Through trial and error, I finally decided the beep was loudest in the dining room. So I sat in there and began my vigil.
Beep. I looked around the painted potting bench. Couldn't find anything there.
Beep. I looked around the black shelf next to it where my gardening books and magazines are stored. Crossed that off the list.
Beep. I looked at the red hutch in the corner. I sat on the floor and started dragging everything out of the bottom. I couldn't find anything demonic enough to have caused all this trouble.
Got back up and sat in the chair again, pulled close to the hutch and black sideboard nearby.
Beep. Louder! I put Abi down and threw open the door of the black sideboard that was closest to me. I dragged most everything out of there. I found a few electrical items. So I put them on the table and looked them over.
A small pump for a table top water feature.
I waited for the beep, my face about six inches from the pump. (Yes, I know this sounds crazy, but I was beyond crazy at that point.) Nope.
I found a flash light. Unlikely. But I wasn't letting anything get past me. I sat it on the table and waited.
Beep. No, not the flash light.
I looked and all I could see were cans of spray paint. Unlikely. Even in a horror movie.
I sat back down. Charlie Ross would occasionally bark at something outside and I would shush him. I realized I was whispering to the dogs. But I didn't want one sound interfering with the job at hand. I couldn't bear the thought of one more hellish night of beeping.
Beep. The drawers! I opened the top one and rifled through the dish towels. Nope.
Beep. I thrust open the second drawer. Nothing there but more dish towels and some fabric napkins.
Beep. I was down to the last drawer. I opened it and saw that it had obviously, over time, become a junk drawer. If I learned one lesson from this, it is to occasionally clean out and purge the junk drawer. The enemy was in there lurking.
Beep. I found an old cell phone. I no longer have service. But this was serious business. I set it on the table alongside the flash light and the pump. I waited. I couldn't believe that wasn't it, even if I haven't used it in months. I had such high hopes this was about to end.
But I still didn't want to let that idea go, so I held it in my hand as I started through the rest of the drawer.
Beep. I pushed things out of the way hither and yon and found an old smoke alarm. Aha! I put it on the table and waited. Abi shifted about my lap and Charlie would see a squirrel outside and I'd shush him again.
Fifteen minutes passed. I turned it over and pretty much memorized what was written on the back as I waited.
Did you know that it says: WARNING, and some other blah blahs. Then: This smoke alarm contains a maximum of 1.0 microcuries of a radioactive material. What???
...Distributed under U.S. NRC License No. 12...blah blah...and is made in compliance with NRC safety criteria...blah blah. The purchaser is exempt from any regulatory requirements.
Well for heavens sake I would hope so!
I waited some more. I have now waited for three hours and there have been no more beeps. So I guess somehow it stopped when I picked it up. Radioactive material? Jeez. Right there with my dining room things.
I have been sitting in my chair doing the features for Tweak It and the thing I have come to hate is setting on the arm of the chair, not a foot from my face, just in case it isn't done. Just in case it isn't even the culprit and I have even more digging to do.
What I really want to do is take it outside and stomp it with my good foot. But I'm not taking any chances with something that says it's made in Mexico and has I-don't-care-how- many-whatever-they-ares of radioactive material. My luck I'd smash it and something even worse would happen.
Abi has calmed down and napped a bit. She's had a rough couple of days of beeps. I don't quite know what to do with this thing. I didn't even take the battery out. No telling how long it has been down there amidst the other junk.
I stop and think what all I've done to find this monstrous thing in the past two days.
Scared myself silly when I pulled a cord and the refrigerator went dead. Climbed multiple times up and down the step ladder to put up and then take down the smoke alarm in the hall. Taken multiple electrical cords out and replaced them. Opened just about every door and drawer in this house.
All with Abi stuck to me like glue.
So I suppose this debacle is over now. I've decided to take it outside and maybe put it in the garage. In case it decides to come to life in the middle of the night.
I do believe there is a horror story here spun through the events of the last two days. Stephen King could have a go at it.
I can't tell you all the crazy things you get to thinking when beeps have intruded upon your life. Driven you half mad in your own house.
Oh dear God I just saw a gnat flitting around my standing lamp's light bulb. Please don't let Charlie see it.
It could be another long night.
It's getting dark. So I took the smoke alarm outside, opened the gate and started the garage door to opening. The thing chirped once more before I set it in there and closed the door. I now had my evidence.