Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My job for today

Why is that workmen keep putting you off and then arrive to do the job when you'd rather they didn't!! Remember I helped unload a few fence panels a couple of weeks ago. We have been waiting to have the fence at the front of the house replaced as over the last couple of years, every time there is a strong wind or storm the fence sways and looks as though it is about to take off. The guy who was doing the work told me he was planning to come on Friday but as he had given me dates twice before and then had a reason not to come I didn't really think he would arrive. However on the said day I got a phone call at 8:30 am saying he would be arriving in half an hour-that's fine I said while cursing under my breath because I had an appointment at 9:15. True to his word he arrived just before 9 am (with his son-in-law as a helper- I can't help getting all the gen it's my social work/inspection background). As I was getting ready to leave, he immediately started ripping out the old fence and by the time I returned an hour later the old fence was on the lawn and two of the new panels had been fitted. I suddenly realised that he might not be sinking the concrete base board (not sure what its called) deep enough (we had previously agreed it would be sunk 6 inches to try and prevent the bindweed and ivy from next door encroaching on our garden).
Conversation went:
me- that doesn't look as though you have sunk the concete
him- no but if I do that I have to dig down
me -if you recall that's what we agreed when you quoted for the job
him- well the fence won't be nice and level like before, it will have to be stepped
me -that's ok I prefer that to getting all the weeds coming underneath
him- ok if that's what you want
me-thank you
I think he then got quite worried as I rushed to get the camera
him- why are you taking pictures?
me- I'm not an idiot I keep records Oh it's just for my web diary, my daughters and friends like to see what I'm doing
I went back inside to make tea and my mother said 'the phone's not working' Oh no me thinks they have cut through the wire which I know is underground where they have been digging and I did warn them. Out I go to check- they assured me they had moved the cable and reburied it. Next step I telephoned the cable company (we have a separate phone line to my mother and this is not affected) after half an hour of pressing buttons and finally talking to an operator who made me unplug the phone then plug it into one of my sockets to make sure the handset worked she then decided that it needed to be checked by an engineer but this couldn't be done until the following week. So she booked an appointment for the Monday between 12-4pm. When I told my mother she wailed 'I feel bereft without the phone, no one will be able to get me how will I manage'- you can use our phone -no I don't want to do that I want my own phone (I can't cope with this I'm thinking). They were almost finished when I took out a second cup of tea, but by then it has started to rain, and I was a bit concerned about the setting concrete. However they finished quickly and did a reasonable job of clearing up, although we do have bits of cement on the path that I can't seem to get off- why does one job always create another!! This is the end result and all I have to do now is put on some fence paint for extra preservation.
They left before 1pm having completed the whole job in under 4 hours which was pretty quick. What really interested me was the way the concrete was mixed by throwing in a bag of mix and pouring water on top; embee assures me this is how its done these days- well even I could that!!!

Postscript on Phone- we didn't have to wait until the Monday- engineer came on Sunday and surprise surprise the phone line had broken (probably as a result of the movement when the fence was being replaced)- there was no charge to us so that was OK -the engineer said it happens all the time. While he was here I also asked him about my wireless connection and he said link your computers ; he got a cable from his van plugged it in and hey presto immediate connection- and so far no other problems- as for the wireless connection well it might be useful for visiting laptops!!



At 22/5/07 13:32, Blogger Anvilcloud said...

It looks like he did a pretty decent job in the end.

At 22/5/07 14:00, Blogger Asha said...

WOW!! Looks like cozy place to hang around in Summer Chris.Few shades and chairs would be great there:))

At 22/5/07 14:24, Anonymous Lisa said...

Looks like a good job, and sounds like workers are the same all over the world!

At 22/5/07 15:58, Blogger john.g. said...

Looks good to me. Enjoy the garden.

At 22/5/07 16:02, Blogger Beccy said...

Does that mean you're not using the wireless anymore?

Fences look good.

At 22/5/07 20:25, Blogger my4kids said...

I love it when you ask for something and they then try to convince you not to do it. Glad the phone didn't take a week to fix. and your wireless is fixed.

At 22/5/07 21:06, Anonymous Karmyn R said...

The fence looks nice - but that whole mixing of cement thing? My husband would freak out about that - he likes to mix it good and thoroughly before pouring. (of course, he doesn't do it for a living)

At 22/5/07 22:17, Blogger frannie said...

the fence looks great! even if the timing was a little off.

glad they got your mum's phone fixed!

At 23/5/07 05:50, Blogger enidd said...

you're so right about one job creating another, chris. but the fence looks good!

At 23/5/07 08:28, Blogger Little Miss Moi said...

Dear chrisb. The fence looks lovely! Still, your poor mother. After having my TV, Internet, home phone and mobile all cut off in one week, I know what it's like to go without communication channels - it's scary!

At 23/5/07 08:41, Blogger ChrisB said...


My mother is happily back using her phone and ordering clothes that I then have to post back when they either don't fit or she doesn't like!!

beccy no I'm not currently using the wireless connection.

At 23/5/07 09:22, Blogger Beccy said...

Granny still does that? Has she not learnt by now!

At 24/5/07 06:20, Blogger Pamela said...

make sure you get a wireless security code so that someone else can't use it... there is some risk of people being able to access your personal stuff

At 24/5/07 06:20, Blogger Pamela said...

baaaahhh... I almost forgot to say that the fence looks great.

Why paint it??? Just let it weather nicely.

At 24/5/07 11:48, Blogger theotherbear said...

Fence looks great. Looks like a good spot to sit with a book in summer. Of course you'd need a chair too, but you can probably work that out.

At 24/5/07 13:36, Blogger ChrisB said...

pamela wireless is controlled by a password so hopefully safe. As for the fence I just felt it needed extra protection.

theotherbear unfortunately its a bit too noisy in that part of the garden and no privacy as it overlooks the main road; the back of the house is where the chairs are and that's where I'm off in a minute.


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