When I was growing up one of my favourite songs was “They’re coming to take me away”, I used to ask my dad to sing it for me – or at least to play it in the old cassette recorder he had in his home office.
Last Friday I couldn’t but think it’s become a self-fulfilling prophecy. I thought I was finally losing the last of my marbles.
As I mentioned in my last post, I woke up bright and early by chirping birds. Spent the day between working by my computer and clearing up piles of mess and chaos after the renovation. Later in the afternoon Bob the Builder showed up.
I showed him the funny sound the dishwasher makes, and told him it’s not normal. He said “sure it is”, and turned on the tap. I stood there cringing because of the weird sound, not at all convinced by the encouraging looks he shot me. Two minutes later he was standing in the cellar with a rag, trying to get rid of the water that was pouring down over him. The dishwasher had indeed kicked the bucket, and since an old pipe happened to be underneath it, the water leaked right through to the cellar.
Since the basement light for some reason does not work, I was kneeling down with a flash light, trying not to laugh at Mickey Blue-Eyes getting all soaked. I hear the front door opening and suddenly the electrician is standing in the kitchen door looking down at me kneeling. He started by apologising for interrupting my prayers…
When all was dry again, and the machine was declared dead, we went on to go through the real reasons I had called the men over. First, the light in the cellar. To make a long story short, we never did understand why it’s not working, only that it most likely is because the light outside the kitchen door blew up last autumn (but not from the lightning strike so question numero uno point uno is how and why it’s blown to pieces). Why these two lights are connected, no-one knows.
Then we proceeded to problem no. 2. The lights in the back rooms upstairs. And this is when the bantering begun. I had been at Gerby on Monday, clearly seeing with my own eyes (and I had two of my nieces there as witnesses) that the lights in the two back rooms did not work. Seeing as the light in the sitting room downstairs did work, I knew a fuse was not to blame. The electrician, however, could swear the lights had worked when he had come by on Wednesday. I told him I had been cleaning the rooms in question this very morning, and I did that without any d*”#mned light. So up we go, like the seven dwarves on the way to the mine. Lo and behold, the lights are on when we reach the rooms. I could see the electrician trying hard not to call me a pinhead right then and there.
After this little incident, nothing I said or did could really get him convinced I was anything but a simpleton, and so the conclusion was that he will come back to address the cellar issue next week, and until that I can practice turning on and off lights upstairs.
Two hours later when I returned back upstairs and found the rooms in complete darkness again, I could hear all sorts of text leaving my mouth. Apparently the light in one of the rooms was supposed to be triggered by a sensor, and I kid you not, I was jumping underneath it, waving my arms, shouting. (Not that the sensor is voice activated, but it seemed like a good idea at the time)
Having declared the whole thing idiotic, I left it and kept to the rooms downstairs.
When night fell, and I felt I had cleaned enough for one day, I went up to get myself clean clothes before a quick shower. With a fair degree of astonishment, I come up to a wholly lit floor. At this point I was weighing my options, “calling mum” did cross my mind a few times, but realising her solution would be “come here”, I decided not to call it a day just yet and put on my thinking cap instead.
It took me about seven runs up and down the stairs until I figured it out.
The lights in the back rooms will go on if you switch on the light in the stairs. But only if you switch them on downstairs (there’s a switch in both ends of the stairs). Seeing as I never use a light, or leave one on, unless absolutely necessary, the thought of switching on the lights when running up the stairs in broad daylight never even crossed my mind. The electrician on the other hand turned out to be one of those people that has an almost manic need of switching on any light he can find.
I’m not crazy after all. That sentence needs to be double-bolded.