Meanwhile, back at stately Suzy Manor, our heroine was being annoyed by a persistently dripping tap in the kitchen. It’s hard to ignore the repetitive and irritating sound when your house is basically one room and where you live is really, really quiet.
I resorted to leaving the sponge in the sink to catch the drips, which is not a long-term solution for the sponge, or for me. Rob took a look at the faucet, and opined that it was a job for my landlord rather than my brother-in-law. To be fair, this line is often blurred, with Rob doing things at my house which should be done by Mark. But Mark is very busy running the property single-handed, along with his thriving business selling succulents and cacti on the interwebs.
I ran into Mark and Citlali at the post office and helped them to decant dozens of boxes from their truck onto the loading dock at the post office, reminding me of the good old days at the jobette, when I used to wrangle small, yet surprisingly heavy, boxes of visitor guides for a living. My box wrestling abilities are yet another of my (mostly) useless talents. While we box wrestled together, I mentioned the faucet drip to Mark. He said he’d look at it.
He did come by and look at it, and decided that he needed a certain type of screwdriver, either to fix it or to investigate what was ailing my kitchen waterworks. It must have been hard to find, since it took more than a week for him to find it and come back to work on it.
In the way of such projects, things went wrong and parts were needed, so it went on for a few weeks. Finally, Mark said it was fixed. I was pretty excited, especially since he also went up on the roof, cleaned out the gutters, swept away the accumulation of pine and redwood needles, and caulked the roof so I should not have the puddle by the Christmas tree, or the mini lake at the foot of the stairs, or the pool on top of the bureau when the rain comes back, which I hope is not for, say, 3 months.
While it’s true that the new faucet did not drip, it was not without its own set of drawbacks.
I went to wash the dishes and turning the control to the left did not produce hot water, no matter how long I let it run. I went out and checked the flash heater, and it was lit, so I was mystified. It turned out that Mark had installed the new faucet set backwards, so that left is cold and hot is right, unlike every other faucet in the house, and probably in North America.
I thought all I wanted was a faucet that didn’t drip. Clearly I was not specific enough, though that particular wish did come true. On the other hand, what else do you expect in a house where the light switches say “no” when you turn them on, and you turn them on by turning them down?
A YEAR AGO: Family dinner with those I love best.
FIVE YEARS AGO: Some parting gifts from Mark and his family. So glad the departure was temporary and they are back home, next door.