Friday, April 22, 2016

What Was Lurking in My Kitchen

I am getting my website updated this week in anticipation of the release of SEAMS LIKE MURDER. I am all set up with Goodreads, though I have to figure out how to use it. It has been a hectic week of travel and two nights of seminars. By this morning I was dawdling over my coffee trying to get my day started. That’s when I heard the noise. It was a staccato sound almost like a whine. I thought it might be my cat. He often makes other worldly sounds just before he throws up (which he does a lot), but when I looked there was no one in the kitchen but me.

I heard the sound again. It was over before I could find the direction it was coming from. The refrigerator was in my line of sight and I felt a clutch in my stomach. Was there something wrong with it? Never a good experience. I heard the noise again. This time there were two staccato sounds close together. They weren’t rhythmic like dripping water or a motor trying to start over and over again. I hoped that eliminated the refrigerator. It was not a sound I could place, which I was pretty sure meant it was some kind of malfunction with something.

I walked around the kitchen again and there was no sound. Could whatever it was be over with? I went back to my coffee and of course, heard it again. I waited a few moments and then decided to just leave the kitchen. As I passed the cabinet under the built in stove top, I heard the noise and it was clearly coming from that vicinity. I felt an instant relief that it was not the refrigerator, but the relief was soon replaced by dread. What could be in that cabinet making the weird noise. I knew there was housing for the exhaust fan and I started to worry that there was some kind of creature under there. My imagination had pretty much taken over and I was thinking some kind of dragon- like lizard.

I also made an instant decision that I wasn’t up to opening the cabinet and finding out and would deal with it later. I left the kitchen and flopped on the couch. There was no repeat of the sounds as least that I could hear in there, but it was still on my mind. Again I started wondering what it could be. And then in a flash, it came to me what it might be, though I couldn’t figure out how. I went back in the kitchen just as the short whine sounded again and laughed when I saw that I was right.

No, the dragon hadn’t escaped the cabinet. I had laid my cell phone on top of an empty tea tin and the ding it made when an email came in had gotten magnified and changed by the open metal tin. Loud enough that I could hear it across the room and so different, I didn’t recognize it. Ah, it was the perfect ending to a problem. No repair or rescue needed. All I had to do what turn it to silent.

Life in the world of dings and doings.

8 comments:

Planner said...

I thoroughly enjoyed your blog post! You had me in total suspense, and the resolution made me laugh out loud. My favorite problems are the non-problems, too!

Nancy said...

What a relief! Somehow I got the idea that there was a creature trapped in your cupboard.

Linda O. Johnston said...

Wow, Betty, in these days of electronics you never know what can happen! I, too, wondered what kind of creature had gotten into your house. Enjoyed your description of your e-experience!

Miriam Lubet said...

I loved your story. I thought it might have been the cat. It sounds like it might appear in one of your books.

Betty Hechtman said...

Planner, it was such a relief that all I had to do was to fish my phone out of the empty tin.

Betty Hechtman said...

Nancy, I was pretty nervous when it seemed like the cabinet was where the noise was coming from. Particularly since I'm the one who always has to deal with things like that.

Betty Hechtman said...

Linda, what amazed me was how the metal tin totally changed the sound from the phone.

Betty Hechtman said...

Miriam, my phone has led to all kinds of situations like time I was at the airport in Chicago and was on my phone and got into the wrong car.