Friday, August 31, 2007

More disasters

At midnight three weeks ago we had just gone to bed when we herd a splashing noise, and it turned out to be water coming through the ceiling of the dressing room/bathroom. We called an emergency plumber, who arrived within half an hour and discovered that the ballcock on the water tank had seized up with calcium encrustations, the tank had overflowed, and the outflow pipe had come loose from its moorings. He fixed the problem rapidly, but not before the flood had loosened the plaster from the ceiling and side walls, filled the light globe with water so that it crashed to the floor, and leaked through the floor to the ceiling of the entrance lobby. The insurance assessors approved the necessary redecorations, and the work has just about been completed. Meanwhile, all the stuff in the dressing room cupboards had to be moved out and we had to move out of our bedroom.

The day after the flood, SOMEONE left the back door open and went out. While I was working upstairs a burglar came in, nicked my HoL laptop from the downstairs room, took the car keys from the table, walked out the front door and drove away in our car. The laptop was nearly 3 years old and due for replacement, so I now have a new one (a Dell PP18L), on which I'm working downstairs now. There was a problem getting it connecting to the network initially, but Netgear's tech support line was brilliant. They actually have live technicians, rather than the web-only based support offered by most hardware manufacturers, and I would recommend their routers anyway as excellent products.

The car insurers decided that our 8 year old Rover was a write-off, partly because the thief took the keys and it would have been necessary to replace 5 sets of locks. So we're looking to get another car, this time one that is low on CO2 emissions and in a lower band for vehicle excise duty. There's a Volkswagen Polo which comes in at nil VED, but its brand new and won't be available until October, which means we would have to hire something for Maurice's visit. We'll have to see what the boss says, when she can be distraced from Neighbours

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