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Sunday, 3 December 2006

Our House Guests Are Vandals

Two days after our visitors arrived I discovered that our outside drain was blocked with a oily substance with grit in it. The only conclusion I can draw from this is that someone has been pouring cooking oil down the kitchen sink. This mixed with the sand and cement washed off my Brother-in-Law (or Chunky as I call him) work clothes has caused the blockage. His girlfriends’ hair has blocked the bath on two occasions as well.

Last week Chunky managed to break the gas lighter we use to start our cooker. Why do we use a gas lighter you ask? The simple answer is that the electronic ignition system on the cooker failed within 30 seconds of the warranty expiring. That was 12 years ago and I’ve long since given up trying to diagnose the fault. Thus the need for a gas lighter. We’ve had to resort to matches for the last few days, which has caused much entertainment all round. Don’t you hate the smell of singed hairs?

Sometime on Thursday evening his girlfriend broke the microwave oven. We discovered this on Friday evening when it failed to spring into life when switched on at the wall. After ascertaining that the fuse was OK and that power was getting to the microwave we decided that it probably failed due to old age. After all it was over 15 years old. I’m thinking of banning them from the kitchen in case they wreck all our other appliances.

Saturday’s task was to replace said broken items. We had to go to a neighbouring town for my Sons Saturday club. Killing two birds with one stone, we popped into Curry’s between dropping him off and to picking him up. They had a vast array of microwave ovens, ranging from basic models at about £30 right up to an “all-singing-all-dancing” model at £299. Who in their right mind would pay that much for a microwave oven? That’s enough to buy a good quality lens for my new camera, which you must agree would be a far better use of the money (hint, hint). In the end we selected an 800W model with built in 1KW grill at £80. A bit steep, but at least we both managed to agree for once.

After struggling back to the car with it, we continued shopping for a replacement gas lighter, which we eventually found in Robert Dyers.

Back at home while unpacking our new toy, I was dismayed to discover that the grilling rack was broken before I’d even got it out of the box. I decided that I wasn’t repacking the whole unit to return it. I’d go to our local branch of Curry’s and get them to exchange the rack from a display model.

To save any messing about I thought I’d ring to make sure they had them on stock. This was a lot harder than I expected. “Press 1 for TVs, Press 2 for fridges and freezers, Press 3 if you've lost the will to live, etc”. After a few button presses I was told to that if my TV screen was less than 23 inches I should return it to my local branch. I have no idea how I got there and hang-up so I could try again. This also failed to get me where I wanted to be and at no time was I given the option to talk to a real Human Being!

This morning, armed with the broken rack and receipt I went to my local branch of Curry’s to get it replaced. Unfortunately that branch doesn’t stock the model and my only choice is to make the 20 miles round trip back to where we bought it in the first place. If I can be bothered I’ll do it next weekend.

At present the rent we are charging them is not covering the breakages. Perhaps an increase is in order.

I wonder which appliance they are planning to break next.


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