“Uh? Wass….?”


I opened my eyes and looked at the alarm clock on the bedside table: 03:10


I got out of bed and sleepily staggered out onto the landing.

Naked and shivering from the cold, I waited for the noise again.  It seemed to take an age.


Ahh, OK, it’s the one downstairs.

Still naked and still shivering, I wandered down the stairs and – on tip-toes – reached up, gave the quarter-turn required to take the smoke alarm off of the ceiling. I pulled the battery from the back and slung them both on the sofa.

The dog threw a disinterested look my way, but didn’t even bother to lift her head from where she was laying.

I went back up to bed and spent an hour trying to get back to sleep.

Which is likely why I feel so tired right now.

This isn’t the first – or even, second – time this has happened. For some reason, the smoke alarm batteries always seem to reach their critical failure point in the small hours. Both the upstairs and downstairs ones have done this over the years.

And so, this morning finds me trawling the internet for mains powered ones.

However, I’ve already given up on that idea, as getting mains wiring to the downstairs one would be pretty difficult and would involve taking up the newly-laid bedroom carpet.

For all that bother, I think I’ll just put up with a sleepless night, once in a while.


  1. Brennig

    Good point. I think we’re about due the same interrupted night of sleep. We should order some replacement batteries.

    • Masher

      Yes, changing them proactively now, could save a sleepless night later.

  2. vanessa howell

    Ummm..change the battereies when you change the clocks? That’s what the ad campaign says here and so far, not one night of uninterupted sleep.

    • Masher

      Ahhh, antipodean words of wisdom, eh, Ness?
      That’s not a bad idea. Problem is: we change the clocks twice a year.
      There needs to be a recognised day for it: Worldwide Smoke Alarm Day, to prompt us.
      Hallmark could even do a card for it. 🙂

  3. Alan

    We have mains ones with battery backup. They still go beep when it says the battery is no longer any good. So I do not think it will resolve your problem. We even use duracell.

    • Masher

      Duracell batteries are probably going to last longer than most others, but I think that cymbal-playing rabbit would prevent me getting any sleep.

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