There was no news from the hospital today so we spent the day doing the usual things: Tigger went to work and I discovered another leak in the bathroom. Since refurbishment began I have become so used to finding things wrong that I just take it in my stride.
The leak was from the washbasin and had made a puddle on the floor. I at first thought it was the pipe supplying the cold water tap that was leaking and said this in the voicemail I left for Alice. Later I discovered that it wasn’t the pipe but water creeping down between the basin and the tap itself: the Useless Plumber had obviously not seated the tap properly or had disturbed it during his last visit.
When the doorbell rang, I was relieved to see that it wasn’t the Useless Plumber. This chap appeared competent, which was a nice change. I explained to Denny (as I shall call him) what I had found out about the leak and also told him that the basin was sloping. I even filled it with water to demonstrate and thus nearly formed a new puddle on the floor.
“I’ll have to talk to my supervisor about this,” said Denny and took himself and his mobile phone discreetly out of earshot.
“You’ve had the basin replaced, haven’t you?” he asked on his return.
I explained that Useless had cracked the old one and that it had had to be replaced. Denny nodded.
“Well, what he’s done,” continued Denny, “is to install the new basin against the bottom of the tiles. So that leaves a gap behind the basin. So it slopes.”
I said nothing. There wasn’t much I could say, really.
“What we’ll have to do is take off the basin, rip out the first row of tiles, refit the basin and retile.”
“But we can’t do it this week,” he added.
“As long as it gets done,” said I resignedly.
We talked some more and while Denny obviously didn’t like to say to much about Useless he did let slip a couple of disparaging remarks. I can’t help wondering why they continue to employ him: he must be hitting their profits because of all the work they have to do again.
In the meantime we shall have to be careful when we use the washbasin otherwise water will run down from the cold water tap onto the floor.
This evening we had our eyes tested. We go to Mr Shah near Moorfields Eye Hospital. And yes, that is his real name. We like him a lot. He is courteous and conscientious and doesn’t pressure you to buy spectacles. In fact, he told me that while he could top up the formula for my reading glasses, it really wasn’t worth doing for now.
Our eyes seem to be in good nick so we set off cheerfully for home. Tigger had it in mind to buy a set of Pyrex dishes she had seen advertised in both Robert Dyas and Woolworth’s. Unfortunately, neither of the stores we visited had any in stock. It shows you how disgustingly domesticated we are becoming, though, doesn’t it? I ask you: Pyrex dishes! We’ll be buying a rolling pin next, if we’re not careful.