Friday, January 16, 2009

My First Night Call

I'm not a morning person.

I never have been, I never will be. I like to roam with the creatures of the night.

Fact of the matter is that I do my best thinking,writing, meditating and brainstorming in the very wee hours of the morning. Unfortunately for me (or for my coworkers depending on your perspective) my nocturnal habits don't mesh so well with my work schedule.

In order to arrive at my desk on time ( I use airline schedules when I state that I was "on time"--that gives me about an hour's leeway), I need to be up (meaning vertical), showered, dressed and out the door by 7:25 a.m.If you've never met me, you may not be aware that I have a lot of hair. I mean a LOT of hair. It's on the longish side, and it's thicker than a McDonald's milkshake. It takes me at minimum 20 minutes with a professional strength blow-dryer to get all the moisture out. I COULD go to work with my hair wet, or damp, but I don't want to frighten old ladies, dogs and small children with my Roseanne Rosannadanna coiffure.

This means that I have to drag my sorry butt out of my comfy bed at 6:00 am, (snooze button) 6:10 a.m. (snooze button) 6:20 a.m. (ok, one foot's on the floor) 6:30 a.m. (SHIT!!! I'm late!! --mad dash for the shower). I don't enjoy this morning ritual, but I can't seem to go from alarm buzzer to bathroom in one easy step.

The POINT of all this is that I don't wake gracefully if woken early (there's an exception to this rule, but it's not for public consumption). In high school my friends would call and if still abed and my parents volunteered to rouse me, the usual response was "NO!!, for the love of humanity, don't wake her!!"

So I went to bed last night fairly early and conked out quickly, which is an anamoly. My pager, the volume of which is set on "stun", went off at approximately 1:00 a.m.This is how it went down:"DEEDLE DEEDLE DEEDLE!!!!"Wha? WTF?? My eyes pop open, heart slamming in my ribcage....holy crap, those are MY tones....make wild grab for light switch behind my bed, knocking over said lamp and breaking it in the process. Right the lamp and turn it on, make valiant effort to leap out of bed in a single bound.My adrenaline fueled legs become hopelessly entangled in the sheets and comforter, which my brain does not acknowledge (my brain is still on a beach in Hawaii getting a well-oiled rubdown) and I vault into a "half-pike with a full twist" face -plant onto my bedroom floor, trailing the twisted remains of my bedding behind me.

I've now spent a full 60 seconds extricating myself from my Venus Flytrap bed, and realize I've blown any chance of putting on Big Girl clothing, so I jam my slippers on my feet (can't find my shoes) and grab my pager, keys and coat and gallop down the stairs (waking all my neighbors en route no doubt) in my nighttime regalia (colorful jammie pants and wifebeater tee)...I hop in my car like Burt Reynolds in a Smoky and the Bandit movie (PUT ON MY SEATBELT) and screech off up the road to the department.

At this juncture approximately three minutes has elapsed, I haven't blinked yet, and I don't remember exhaling. I pull in ahead of a couple of other members, we all dash to the bay and begin the Turnout Chinese Fire Drill. As we're running to the truck, we get the announcment--false auto alarm, business owner on site and calling off the alarm.

Dejected, I put my gear back, sign in on the sheet, say my good nights and head home.Swell, it's now 1:30 and I am WIDE AWAKE....I've had a nap and an adrenaline surge, and I'm ready to take on King Kong....but I have to be up in 4.5 hours.One hour of restless channel flipping and pacing later, I force myself to lie down and count backward from one million (and somewhere in the dark recesses of my twisted brain, I'm hoping that the tones drop again since I'm already awake).

Until next time....

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