I had just turned out the lights and gotten into bed when Giancarlo came to the side of the bed with a kiss goodnight. He said he was going to go downstairs to his dad's office and scan some things.
Drifting to sleep, I was soon awakened by a very loud Giancarlo talking and walking up the stairs and down the hallway. This was so unlike him to be noisy once I had gone to bed; usually he is extremely quiet and considerate. As he entered the bedroom, I lifted my head to see him walking into our bathroom, followed close behind him by his dad.
"Crap! I'm in the wrong room!" he announced.
Strange. Giancarlo began rummaging in one of his drawers, and gave what sounded like a bottle of pills to his dad.
He then got into bed, and his dad called, "Everything okay?"
Giancarlo replied that everything was okay, and his dad left the room.
"Was something wrong?" I asked.
"No, but I took an Ambien and then went down to my dad's office and started talking nonsense so he brought me back upstairs."
Irritably, I answered, "Okay, well next time you take an Ambien do me a favor and get right into bed because you woke me up!"
"Okay. Oh, no, oh no, oh noooo. This is not good. This is not good," he whined.
"What?" I asked. "What's not good?"
"Well I can't get into bed." He fussed with the sheet.
Getting crankier, I retorted, "You're already in bed. Just go to sleep. You're fine."
"Okay, sorry. . . but who are all these people? Who are all the people?" he asked.
"What people? There are no people here. Just go to sleep!"
"Alright. But who are all the people?"
I made a big deal out of rolling over and repositioning. Soon, Giancarlo's breathing evened into a light snore and I drifted off once again.
The next thing I knew, our dogs began barking loudly, signalling that someone was coming to the front door. I looked at the clock. 11:45. On a school night.
Then, the doorbell rang. The doorbell at our house does not simply go ding dong. Since my mother-in-law is nearly deaf, they installed a special doorbell. At a volume as loud as a jet engine, it blasts DING DONG, DING DONG....DING, DING, DING DOOONNNNNGGGGGGG. Truthfully it is enough to give anyone a coronary. Except the deaf lady with heart problems.
"I'll get it," Giancarlo says as he sits straight up in bed.
"Oh, no you won't. You lay back down. I'll get it!" Now I was really miffed.
Just as I was pulling my t-shirt over my head, a paramedic walked in. Then another. Then another, and another, and another. Then some firemen entered. I counted ten emergency responders in all. Hidden amongst them was my little father-in-law.
He emerged from the throng of men and I looked at him incredulously, with my eyes bulging, and hissed, "What is going on?!?"
Chuckling sheepishly, he replied, "That medication has some very dangerous side-effects, so I--"
"So you called 9-1-1?" I nearly screeched. "He only took one Ambien! One! He's fine!"
At this moment, two of the responders approached me, and said, "Sir, why don't you have a seat right here? Are you feeling okay? Do you know where you are?"
"Of course I--no, no! I'm not the one! I didn't take an Ambien, it was him!" I thrust my finger in the direction of our bed. Sunken into the memory foam and covered by blankets, Giancarlo was scarcely visible.
They eyed me as if they were unsure if I was speaking the truth or if I really was the one talking Ambien crazy talk.
They believed me and approached Giancarlo. "Sir? Do you know where you are?"
Completely lucid now, Giancarlo said, "I'm in my bed."
"And what's your name?"
"And do you know what happened?"
"I took an Ambien and didn't go to bed and started talking crazy."
"And have you been drinking?"
"Yes. I had a glass of wine."
I had to jump in, "He had two sips of my wine and that was like four hours ago!"
"Sir? You shouldn't mix drugs and alcohol, it can be very dangerous."
By then I had had enough. Pushing my way through the crowd, I also brushed past my mother-in-law, who had miraculously sprinted up the stairs without a single groan, even though earlier she couldn't even get out of her chair to get her own glass of water.
I hid out in Diego's room until Los Angeles County's Finest finished up my my own room and drove their paramedic trucks, fire engines, and ladder trucks away.
It took me two hours to fall asleep after that. I was seething. Why hadn't they at least given me a heads up that they had called 9-1-1? Better yet, why didn't they at least consult with me, Giancarlo's spouse, before deciding to call?
The next night at dinner, my father-in-law offered, "I gave you a scare last night, eh? I only wanted to ask them a question. And they sent the paramedics anyway."
"Well, YEAH, they sent the paramedics! If you call 9-1-1, they're going to treat it like an EMERGENCY. That's what they DO."
And then, like that, it was over. Not another word was said about the whole incident.