Monday, September 12, 2011

Misadventures over Labor Day Weekend.

My family has this wonderful tradition of starting off the summer season at my folk's cabin on Memorial Day weekend.  We didn't do it this year because I had just started my recovery from surgery that weekend, but we did get up to the cabin over the Fourth of July weekend which happened to be my last weekend of disability leave before going back to work.  We also end our summer at the cabin over Labor Day Weekend and this year was no different.

It was a small group this year, our daughter Jamie was in Hawaii visiting a friend.   My brother Andy and his girlfriend were attending a music festival in Wisconsin. My sister and her girls have never been able to make it up for our extended weekend adventures.  So we met my folks up there on Friday night and my brother Corey joined us the next day.

The weekend turned out to be full of snafus and incidents.  First I woke up to a prank by my husband.  This past week I had been jittery because there was a huge barn spider living just outside my kitchen window and it's been freaking me out.  He decided to "expand" on that by putting a huge fake web and spider over the entire front wall inside the cabin.  I knew it was fake the moment I laid eyes on it and I did chuckle a little bit, my husband was disappointed that I didn't do much more than that.  My parents mentioned that they were laughing and chuckling as they watched Dave put it up and they commented that it was a good thing I had my device off because they couldn't resist laughing.  No screams to scare the wild life in the morning hours though.

That was incident number one.

My folks have solar power running a few lights in the cabin, so I had decided to bring my disposable batteries for my cochlear device to use for the weekend.  Generally, I use rechargeable batteries for my cochlear device on a daily basis.  I have two long and one short rechargeable one and I can go a whole day with two long batteries.  These batteries are charged every night for the next day.  I have a supply of disposable batteries for back up and for situations where I do not have ready access to electricity that is needed to run my battery charger.

Well, for Labor Day weekend, I had one charged short rechargeable battery on hand, but I started off using a pair of disposable batteries Saturday morning.  About two hours later, they ran out.  I panicked, because I was expecting it to last me for most of the day (it lasted longer than a day when I had used a pair of disposable batteries before).  I put in my second pair, I only had three pairs with me to last me the entire weekend.  The second pair didn't even last 2 minutes.  Now, I really panicked.  I hollered out to my husband that my disposable batteries weren't working and I didn't have any back up because they were the back up! 

My husband was able to check the power of the batteries that were left and discovered that they were bad to begin with.  I was crushed - no new sounds from nature for me this weekend.  I used my last charged rechargeable sparingly over the entire weekend.  It had about 5 ½ hours of power.  I saved it for the meal times and one game time.  After our last meal, I just left it on until it ran out.

That was incident number two.

Incident number three happened at the local hardware store in the area.  My dad needed an extension cord so he sent my mother and I into town to pick one up.  An over friendly (or overly grouchy – we can’t quite determine which it is) older gentleman was manning the store.  I couldn’t hear him, but I could tell that he was quite the chatterbox and a bellyaching fussbudget too.  He tried to help my mother choose an extension cord for what she needed.  Depending on what you need some of those cords are quite costly.  She chose one that was in the lower price range to which he hollered “your husband is going to send you right back here if you pick that one up!!”

He picked out the second most expensive one and she mentioned that she didn’t want to spend that much money and he retorted “Well then I can’t help you!!”.   They did finally find one that they could both live with.  I could see by the amused look on my mother’s face that she was having quite an encounter with this man.

I had picked up some kitchen utensils that I thought would be useful in my own kitchen.  After my mother made her purchase, the gentleman was jabbering on about something or other and I approached him to make my purchase.  Blah, blah, blah he went on and on.  I gave him my credit card.  Blah, blah, blah the back of the truck, blah, blah, blah.  Then he threw my credit card at me as if to emphasize how displeased he was with whatever was going on in the back of some customer’s truck.  The credit card hit me on my “bosoms”.   I must have looked quite shocked (how the heck would I know what just happened???), my mother said he had this look on his face like he thought “What the heck did I just do – I just threw her credit card at her bosoms!”  (My mother tells this story far better than I can)

We never explained to him that I couldn’t hear anything and after awhile, it didn’t seem worth the effort.  Sometimes it's just too awkward.

That was incident number three.

We left our usual Sunday afternoon, but even as I got home I had to put all my rechargeable batteries in the charger.  The short one took 2 1/2 hours to charge up.  I had a 60 disposable batteries, none of them were any good.  That was extremely disappointing.

At any rate, I learned my lesson.  I will always carry my rechargeable batteries with me.  The very next business day, I ordered two more long rechargeable batteries, so that I will always have plenty of charged batteries on hand.  They only cost me $216 each.  We need to address the disposable battery problem though.

Dave said that we can always plug my charger into the inverter which can be plugged into our vehicle.  So, other than when I'm in a canoe in the middle of the boundary waters or something like that, I'm good!

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