Tuesday, 14 June 2011

It's raining inside

One of those days/weeks

Tuesday 7:25am
I cracked open the laptop and looked through my emails. The weather forecaster had been predicting snow but they’d not said anything about torrential rain. The rain outside sounded epic and the kind that would give Noah bad dreams. I looked up to check the size of the rain drops. Nothing doing. No rain on the immaculate decking, no rain in the sky. But the rain in the chimney sounded bad........

‘Rain. In. The. Chimney?’ I spelled it out slowly to myself.........Bugger!
‘It’s raining in the house again’ I shouted at the top of my voice, running as fast as I could in my totes toasties across the laminate floor. I bounded up the stairs
‘No – turn the stop cock off!’ Nick shouted from the landing, so I turned tail and ran back down to the kitchen. With super human strength I pulled the dishwasher from the wall and turned off the stop cock.

Running back upstairs, the sight that greeted me was like something out of the Titanic. There was water spurting everywhere. The boiler had sprung a leak and it was determined to shower everything in its wake. We grabbed Zoe’s bath from the bathroom and filled it over and over again as the water kept coming. We even used her top ‘n tail bowl, but in truth, it didn’t hold very much and the water was coming out at all angles.

We struggled to catch the water with the baby bath for a good ten minutes before the water finally stopped.

Steve, our fantastic plumber, turned up within the hour and surveyed the scene.
‘The cold water pipe has come away from the boiler. Get your hairdryer out Vik and dry the circuit boards and I’ll be back with a clip to fix the cold water pipe back in place.’
As luck would have it, the supplier was all out of clips, so we spent another night and day without hot water and heat, and swearing about Rob Mcelwee and his cronies who were still talking about snow.

Steve fixed the clip late Wednesday evening and we enjoyed hot water and heat all of Thursday.......well, all of the daytime hours of Thursday, as at 7:25pm, the cantankerous boiler decided to blow a clip again and spray everything in sight. Unfortunately, we were out, so we weren’t as quick to the stop cock as we’d been on Tuesday morning.

I don’t know whose bright idea it was to put a boiler upstairs......oh wait, yes I do – it was the previous occupants. They obviously didn’t consider the implications of having a combi boiler, connected to the mains, sitting pretty in the 2nd bedroom above the lounge, as either a hazard or a worry.

As the boiler spewed forth from above, the walls of the lounge ran with tears and Tuesday’s water stain swelled to cover a third of the ceiling.
The scene that awaited us was worse than Tuesdays. We ran around with the baby bath again and Nipper at our heels shouting’ uh- uh! Oh deee-ah! Oh deee-ah!’

Friday 2:19pm
I’m scared. I’m waiting for 7:25 to come around again and for our Ground Hog Day to begin again.
The clip’s back in place, the water’s going where it should be and Nipper and I have just waved Steve off again. We like him a lot, but we hope he won’t be back. Truth be told, it will be hard to contact him because his day went something like this:
Inundated with calls from pregnant ladies (with boilers to fix), people with leaking emersions and a woman in Eynsford whose clip had pinged off again.
Steve rolls into Eynsford with the wind behind him and enough time to fix this clip and get himself over to the lady expecting twins in Riverhead whose gasket has blown.
‘Hello Vik, lead the way’.
‘Here we go Steve – the disaster zone – bedroom 2’...
Steve spent a good half an hour re-clipping the delinquent water pipe back in place, cleaning up the boiler and drying down the fan and circuit boards. Nipper and I watched with interest as he cleaned the ‘fiddly bits’. Nipper was very impressed by Steve’s phone/torch combination. She’d seen a torch before and she’d seen a phone before, but not one combined. It was small enough to squeeze between the burners and illuminate the damp patches on the thermo couple (‘m not making this up – I know my boilers!)
‘Would you like a ham sandwich Steve?’
‘No thanks Vik’
‘It’s nice ham from Norman’s’
‘No – I’m ok, I’ll be out of your way in a minute – let’s just fire this up. Turn your thermostat up and we’ll get it all warm in here’.
Nipper and I found the thermostat, cranked it up and returned to bedroom 2.
We stood next to Steve and admired the shiny pipe work going up to the boiler, we marvelled at the roar from the burners, then
‘Bl**dy H***!’
The boiler blew up.
I jumped and Nipper screamed. I decided it was time for an afternoon nap, so we adjourned to Nipper’s room and left Steve with the smoking boiler. God damn it – a new boiler?
A nappy change later and Steve called us back
‘Vik – it’s fine – the boiler’s ok – I just left my phone in there, and it went bang’
‘You blew up your phone??’
‘Well, I knew it would happen one day. I nearly did it once before. It’s not a bad thing, at least no none else can get hold of me today or tomorrow either!’ he grinned.

Half an hour later and full of Norman’s ham, Steve left with his burned out phone in a plastic bag.

We have the heating on, the water’s pumping through the pipes and I’m as jumpy as Noah waiting for the rains to come again....... Does anyone have the number of a good plumber? Ours went up in smoke.

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