So, it’s 3 a.m. on a Monday morning and I have just realised my feet are wet. I look down to find the bathroom flooded with water and then I look for the source and notice this (see first picture): the cistern has detached from the wall and all the connecting pipes are broken.
I can’t wake my landlady because it’s 3 a.m. and it’s not like she can do anything at that time anyway. So, I set about soaking up the water using paper towel and a jiffy sponge as I had thrown my mop away after it broke and was going to replace it on Monday. It took ages to clean up by which time it was around 5 a.m. and as my landlady is usually up at 7 a.m. I figured there was no point even trying to sleep. Of course, I wasn’t banking on her getting up late. By the time she surfaced and tried to call someone in, it was around 9.30 a.m.
I went to bed around 11 and woke up at around 4 to find a note saying they had temporarily fixed the cistern, but not to press on it “too hard”. Riiiiiight. Someone is supposed to fix it properly next week.
Someone was also supposed to replace the fluorescent tube in my kitchen today, but no-one turned up. It takes two people to unscrew it and replace it (I kid you not!).
Needless to say, I did not attend work on Monday evening, having been up for 36 hours, but I am back now and fuming. This bathroom was refurbished in January 2008, but they sacked the guy doing the job and my landlady finished it off herself. My landlady was also supposed to fix the new patches of damp (clearly visible in the first photograph) while I was in Australia last year, but on my return she said she “had not had time”. Well, since then my brother has celebrated his first anniversary (congratulations to him and my sister-in-law), but it gives an idea of how long it takes for things to be repaired.
I have not had living room light fixtures (16′ high ceilings) for over a year, either. The electrician came and removed the unsafe ones early last year and was supposed to replace them the next day; he didn’t. He also didn’t remove the light fixture in my bathroom as when I turn off the light, it continues to blink/shine for some time afterwards which is an indicator it remains live; very unsafe.
If only I had the money to move. And, no, I did not win the £113m Euro draw on Friday, but I sure as heck envy the one who did.