The perils of sleeping on air

Air Mattress
A former sleeping haven, now a heap of vinyl
On air mattresses to be exact. I bought one about 7 months ago for a bargain price at Robinsons’ Place in Dasmarinas. It has been a great bed to sleep on. I remember a few years back you’d spend a fortune on one of this so-called ‘air bed’. It saved me some Php9,000 on a regular mattress. Unfortunately, last night, we discovered a hole on one of its seams. A fingernail clipping was the culprit. Another misfortune is that the air mattress didn’t come with a repair kit so unless I find a way to patch the hole, it was the end of it.

So I went around the house, asking others if they have a super glue ((aka Mighty Bond, but I didn’t want to sound like I’m promoting it.)), the plan was to cut up the other inflatable pillows that came with the air mattress and use its vinyl skin to patch the hole. Fate was against us last night as we were out of super glue.

The next alternative then was duct tape. Asked around again if we still had some as grandma was always sending a roll or two along with her balikbayan boxes. Tragically, we had also run out of duct tape.

It’s times like this that the adrenaline really does wonders to my creativity. I saw an old box which had a good measure of duct tape wrapped around it. One end had overlapped the other, meaning that part of the tape would still have a good amount of its well-known adhesive properties.

Using a pocket knife ((We Pinoys call it ‘cutter’)), I scavenged a portion about an inch long and wide. Almost ran upstairs back to my bedroom and used it to patch the now dying air mattress which was still bleeding air. Meticulously applied the duct tape, using the handle of a paint brush to really give it a good seal. It held on. Kept the air inside and my wife and baby daughter was able to use the air mattress again.

Half-hour battles

Until half-an-hour later, the mattress was leaking air again. The old duct tape wasn’t that adhesive anymore. Again another frantic rush to find a fix. In desperation, I grabbed some roof sealant. Thinking all I needed that time was a material good enough to plug the pinhole that will last for the night. So on goes the sealant ((It was Elastoseal. It’s better than using chewing gum, right?)) which I then gingerly patted to into a nice plug. It was then covered with masking tape as a cap. Then a strip of electrical tape, because it was just lying around at that time, went on for another layer of security. All in vain actually.

Another half hour passed and my wife reported that the mattress was still leaking air. With me fresh out of ideas for a quick fix, we’ve surrendered to the grim reality that for last night, we would be sleeping on the floor.

Accepting defeat, we rummaged around the house, grabbing any loose curtain, unused blankets and spare comforters in order to provide a soft cushion for the night. Having wake up from that disaster, I am determined come hell or high water to have the air mattress fixed today. We’re not sleeping again on the floor tonight.

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