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In my long a varied life as a professional human being, I’ve learned a few skill-sets along the way. Apart from the obvious, like walking and talking, I learned how to ride a bike, though I haven’t ridden a bike since I was eleven. I learned a lot about wine in my first job, and still enjoy learning about wine. I discovered the mystical art of stock control in my teens and taught myself how to program a computer. I was lucky, I have one of those brains that retains information in detail, almost a photographic memory.
I learned some practical skills as well. I can cook, I know my way round a needle and thread. I have no problems with kitchen appliances, even that bastion of female exclusivety, the washing machine.
However, there is one thing I have never mastered. DIY. Do It Yourself, just tryping it makes me sweat. It looks dangerous, is dangerous and a deadly non-skill to those who are somewaht blasé about drilling holes in walls, where electric wires, LIVE electric wires, lie beneath. I kid you not, it’s dangerous stuff. I had a pal a few years back who drilled a hole in a wall and woke up an hour later across the other side of the room with a broken arm and smouldering hair. You do not want to drill a hole anywhere near live electric wires thst are hidden inside a wall.
I was once asked by a girl-friend to fit a tube heater in her bathroom. She ignored me when I said I didn’t know which end of a drill did what. She ignored me when I said putting an electric heater in a potentially wet bathroom was a mistake. And she finished with me after I drilled so many holes in her bathroom wall that it looked like an attack of termites had taken place.
So, at my grand old age of sixty-five I’m still fit and strong, pretty good at most things, especially computers and software, but I have still haven’t mastered DIY. And in particular I haven’t mastered plumbing. So, here’s my dilemma. I have a leaky tap (faucet or spigot to some) in the kitchen. I was told by an odd-job man what tap I needed to buy and he would then fit it. I bought the tap, Covid-19 arrived and so did lockdown. Now the lockdown is over, I called the odd-job man and he has moved back to Britain! I now have a tap, and there are no plumbers for miles around the little village in Cyprus where I live.
Ladies and gentleman, I give you the DIY Plumber. If you hear some gurgling sounds coming from my vicinity, you will know the plumbing isn’t going quite to plan.
Copyright © Tom Kane 2020
The Brttle Sea will be published 25th June 2020 #TheBrittleSea