It is some time since the spotlights started to go out in Jay’s room and then in CC’s bedroom too.
When it got to the stage of one light left (yes we did try changing the bulbs but that wasn’t the solution) it was time to call in an electrician. The yellow pages listed several nearby, in fact there is one at the end of our road but since he backed into Jay’s car a few months back I thought I’d avoid him.
I called a chap who lives a few miles away. He answered personally and said he’d come to do an estimate that afternoon. I was pleased but then I wondered why he had so much free time.
Anyway, he seemed to know what he was doing when he came to inspect the job. The problem was the spotlights which the previous owner dotted all over the house. It seems they get very hot but the ones in the bedrooms had been covered with fibreglass insulation AND also had wires over the top of them. He claimed we had come very close to having a fire and he may well be right judging by the melted piece of aerial wire he showed me.
It was agreed that we would replace the spots in the bedrooms with ‘ordinary’ lights but the ones in the toilet and hall would remain and be protected by earthenware flowerpots!
“I’ll bring you the estimate tomorrow.” he promised.
Of course, he didn’t.
Four days later he turned up with an envelope and came in for a coffee to explain it. He would put two lights in Jay’s and CC’s rooms (plus another in her bathroom) and just one in the guestroom. He suggested longlife low energy bulbs and I opted for bright ones – only 25w but they give the same light as 100w normal bulbs.
CC and Jay later found the low energy bulbs hurt their eyes because they gave out too much light and promptly replaced them with ordinary bulbs.
He agreed to come and do the job ‘on Thursday or Friday’ but I asked him to ring and let me know.
He rang on Friday evening to say he’d be round at nine o’clock on Saturday.
He actually turned up just after eleven with his son in tow. They worked hard and I get the impression it took longer than they had envisaged, climbing about on top of the bedroom ceilings among the itchy fibreglass.
When it came to turning off the power they asked where the control panel was. I showed them and asked if they had brought a torch.
“Oh, I didn’t think of that.” he said. (!!??)
Fortunately Bear told them there was another panel in the loft where they could turn off the electricity more selectively. (I didn’t know about that despite having lived here for 6 years.)
They were hard at work after midday so I went to see what was happening. They were not finished as they still had to fill in all the holes in the ceiling where they had removed the spots.
Thye came downstairs for a beer and said they’d be back ‘tomorrow’ – i.e. Sunday!
This time CC and Jay didn’t believe they would be here at nine and stayed in bed. Of course, they came just after 9.30!
Lunch was cooked and stashed in the hostess trolley but it was getting on for half past one before they came down for an apero. They still hadn’t finished. One of the lampholders was faulty so they’d have to replace it and the plaster would need sanding when it was dry.
After a couple of pastis they left, promising to be back on Monday “or if not, definitely on Thursday” were his parting words.
They did not make an appearance on Monday so it’s fingers crossed they turn up tomorrow – but I’m not counting on it.