The White Cottage

MY DAYS IN RETIREMENT

“Hey Honey, Got A Minute?” (And Sump Pump Saga, cont’d)

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“Nat, can I get your opinion on something?” Famous last words, I suppose, coming from a wife to a husband. But as we weren’t exactly doing anything exciting today – just sitting around waiting for that new sump pump to be delivered – I had an idea. Again, another phrase every husband hates to hear.

For the longest time I’ve had trouble with where the desk was positioned in the office. I’ve always had trouble with the office window being partially behind the computer monitor. On a good sunny day, or even a sunny winter’s day, with the reflection of the window bouncing off of the mirrored closet doors right through the computer monitor, I was forever squinting trying to see certain portions of any program I was running. So I’m thinking this might be a good day to reposition the desk, by just turning it around. Being an L-shaped desk I didn’t see any problems, but checked with hubby anyways! Hey, I’ve been wrong before, so just wanted confirmation that this thing was doable, what with electrical cords and USB wires coming from every angle. If I got into the middle of this project on my own, it would be a certainty that I’d get into trouble and have to undo whatever it was I had just done!!

After looking at the electrical hub underneath the desk and looking around (like men do), he said this was a fairly easy thing to accomplish. Naturally, he turns to me and says: “When were you thinking of doing this?” With a goofy grin on my face, I said “So what else you got to do today?”. With that look of approval I ran for the laundry basket and promptly started loading up all of those doodads and thing-a-ma-bogs on the desk – the stapler, tape dispenser, address book, printer, Back-Up Hard Drive, Cogeco’s little black box, keyboard, mouse, etc. We also had to shift a couple of small filing cabinets and after putting them to one side we hoisted up the desk and flipped that thing around to where I wanted it. As luck would have it, all of those electrical cords that were plugged into our surge protector box were now in a better position should anything have to get changed at a later date. Prior to moving the desk this box was tucked way under the corner of the desk where you had to be a contortionist to get to the damn thing. So my idea wasn’t as bad as I thought.

It wasn’t long afterwards I was able to put things back from whence they came, just in a different position, and Nat was now getting all of those cords organized with one of those spiral things that keep them out of harm’s way. We were pleased with the way the move turned out and while putting a few extra things we no longer needed downstairs, the front doorbell rang.  Could it be??? Was it really??? Yes, it was the UPS guy. The new sump pump had arrived, and early enough to still call Bart to finally get this thing installed.

But wait!!! Things don’t go that easy for us – remember!!! Turns out the good people in Ohio sent us a “sewage sump pump”, a bigger and heavier one than what was needed. Were they thinking we were just dumb Canadians, did they accidentally send us the wrong one, or did they truly believe if they sent us a bigger, heavier pump that it would satisfy our craving to collect these damn things!!! We waited until Bart arrived and naturally this new pump was way too big to fit the hole in the ground in the basement. Gee, what were the odds!! So as I’m sitting in the office, playing around with some re-organization I could hear the two men downstairs working way. “This things just not gonna fit, Nat”, says Bart. “I don’t know what they were thinking”, replies Nat. So on, and so on the conversation went. Every now and again I could also hear Nat running back and forth to the work sink in the furnace room grabbing buckets of water to pour down the sump pump hole. Somethin’ was going on, but what, I wasn’t too sure. Wanting to be surprised, I stayed away from the whole affair. Things got a little quiet and within less than an hour, I finally heard the two of them coming back upstairs. Apparently the deed was done. With our thanks and gratitude for his patience and work, we thanked our new plumber buddy and he was on his way to another job.

“Well, gonna give me the low down?”, I asked as Nat popped his head into the office. “That new pump is no good, and I’m not too sure what we should do with the damn thing”, he said. Apparently the two men resolved this whole bloody affair by taking the switch (which started this whole schmozzel) from the first pump that was sent to us that didn’t work – this is the one that ran slow and got warm – and put it on the very original pump that had the broken switch in the first place!!!! Yeah, you guessed it, problem solved, apparently!!!! So now sitting in the office, the two of us start to talk. “Not too sure if we call the Water Systems people, what we’d tell them or how to explain this whole thing”, says Nat. Bart had suggested that maybe he could use it on one of his jobs coming up, but couldn’t give us any guarantees, and was leaning towards us sorting out this mess. “Well, I’ve got an idea”, says I. (This is obviously a day where the ideas are quite abundant for me!!) “The sump pump that arrived today is replacing a sump pump sent to us that doesn’t work and which sump pump was sent to replace a broken switch on the original sump pump, right??”, I asked, surprising myself that I could remember this whole scenario. “So why not just sell the latest arrival on Kijiji and recoup some of the money we’re obviously going to owe Bart for this whole affair?? I further explained that putting an ad in Kijiji will cost us nothing, that this was a new, never used pump that would probably sell better than a used one, and so far we’ve had pretty good luck selling stuff that we no longer use or need”. As far as the folks in Ohio are concerned we owe them nothing, as we were only looking for a replacement switch in the first place, and if we send this new one back are they going to pay the cost of shipping. We’ve already doled out $30.00 in total brokerage fees and it was their decision to send us new pumps. I’m thinking, they’re hopefully thinking “case closed”.

I could see Nat’s eyes stop blinking for a few seconds as the idea kicked in. “But who’s gonna buy a sewage sump pump except maybe some farmers?”, he asked. “You’re kidding me, right?”, I quipped. I went on to explain that we’ve sold several items via this media in the past that surprised us, including a set of juggling clubs to a young lad nearby. “Never say never”, I replied.  With that suggestion we agreed to set the latest and greatest sump pump aside in the basement for a couple of months and see what happens down the road. God forbid, however, if anything else goes wrong with the main or back-up sump pumps we’re not gonna call Ohio. We’ll have to look to our new plumber buddy to get us what we need. Cross every appendage on the old body and hope like hell we’re good to go for at least another few years!!!

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Author: Twila

Born and raised in a small town in Ontario, Canada, with 5 sisters and a brother. Now retired, my husband and I travel, play golf and am slowly renovating our new (old) home. After my kidney transplant in 1999, we've learned to enjoy life to the fullest. Nat and I have driven across Canada, taken an Alaskan cruise and drove home via the Northern United States. We've also been to Mexico, the Caribbean, the East Coast of Canada and Cape Breton. We've done the "Snowbird" thing, having lived in Destin, Florida for a couple of months of the year. In 2007 we changed our travel plans in order to move into and renovate our new "old" home, but hope to someday get back on the road again. We also love returning to Scotland (Nat's origin of birth) to visit his family and tour the Highlands and surrounding Isles.

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