We recently finished a major renovation on our bedroom. I say finished loosely because it’s not quite finished yet. And just like many other home projects, it’s always those small little details that get lost in the shuffle. So it’s no surprise that I still need to refinish the vent cover for the air supply into the room. Right now it’s just a big open hole. Knowing how many Matchbox cars I lost as a kid, I knew it was just a matter of time before Ellie dropped something in.
Ellie loves to play around in our room. She likes to go to my nightstand and turn the radio on and dance. And then if she can do it before I stop her, she likes to take Aya’s shoes off the shelf and make a big pile. Then she disappears into my closet returning with things I didn’t even know existed in there. Then she makes her way back to my nightstand where the baby monitor is plugged in. She picks it up and holds it like a phone, and says, “Hey-yo?” smiling. But this time she took the monitor, walked over to the vent hole and dropped it in. Uh oh. I wondered if this was an accident or just a coincidence that it was her monitor that got lost in the hole. Was she trying to tell us something? “Stop monitoring me folks! I need some privacy!”
I reworked all the vents underneath the bathroom floor which is next to our bedroom. So I know specifically that the bedroom vent doesn’t go straight down to the first floor. It goes underneath the bathroom floor before it makes it’s way to the basement, so I knew it couldn’t be far. I just had to reach in and grab it. I know what’s down there. I routed it. But for some reason, there’s a certain amount of fear that goes along with putting your arm down a dark dirty hole and blindly feeling around for something. What if the monitor didn’t fall down there? What if it was taken!? And whatever took it, was sitting watching my hand fumble around quietly waiting for the right moment to take me? Aya, Ellie, step back. This could be dangerous. I’m going in.
But when I put my hand in the vent, I couldn’t find the monitor. I felt the bottom of the duct and some dirt. Hmmm. It had to be in there. Where else could it go? I got a wire coat hanger and went a little deeper. I could feel it hit something, but it didn’t want to move. It could have been the side of the duct I was feeling for all I knew. I was going to need a more sophisticated tool to get this out. It was time to get all CSI on this project.
My dad has one of those flexible camera scopes. You know those tools they use in Mission Impossible to see who’s coming when they are hiding under the floor? Yeah, one of those cool gadgets. I’m not sure why my dad has one, but he does. The last time I checked he was not a secret government spy, but you never know, right? If he is, he covers it pretty well.
Anyway, I turned the light on the camera and started probing around. Again, while seeing the inside of the duct through the monitor, there was that slight fear of what I’d see. On CSI they always find the face of a dead body staring back at them through the camera and then say something like, “This murder has a second story,” dum dum dummm.
Luckily, that didn’t happen. I just saw an empty duct until… There it was! It was just as I remembered. There was the belt clip and the on/off button. That was it alright. It was intact, but a little dirty. I felt like deep sea detectives, but instead of finding a lost submarine, it was the baby monitor. And now with it located and in my sites, I had to figure out how to get it out to safety.
It turned out I needed not one, but two coat hangers! While looking in the screen and meticulously moving the coat hanger, I was able to snag the monitor and drag it to the surface. I did it!
My first search and rescue mission was a success! Thank goodness it was just the monitor, and it was recoverable. Before she throws down Aya’s earrings and I get into real trouble, I now have that extra motivation to go refinish the vent cover. It kind of makes me want to go on a search and rescue mission at parent’s house now. I wonder how many of my old Matchbox cars I can recover.