The very notion of having a load of strangers, i.e. builders, working in my home is set to cause every single vein in my forehead to expand, threaten to exceed the limits of their proliferation and wildly, uncontrollably explode!
Let me explain. Here, at this beautiful house we call home, a bathroom needed to be renovated, or re-modelled as the Americans say; and sure doesn’t it sound so much more exotic and expensive? Hence the need for calling in the builders.
Last week, while someone in Roscommon forgot to take the waxy statue that is the Child of Prague back indoors after the young wan’s First Communion, the entire county was losing the run of itself in the unprecedented, historical and absolutely fantastic tropical weather! While there was a run on lady-shaves as those women across the county who’d been preserving their leg and armpit hair (and any other stubbly body bits that hadn’t seen sun nor shaving foam) since last October were now desperate to be smooth and hairless as dreams of beach bodies and evening barbeques took hold, we…had the builders in!
Now you see, historically, myself and builders have never got on. It all started when I lived in Dublin and my former hubby engaged the services of a reckless, feckless moron who built two gate pillars at the end of our garden walls, which promptly fell down. The job he estimated would take three days, took seven, and cost twice as much. Long story short…former hubby, loath to confront the goon, advised me to “leave it be, we’ll get someone else to finish the job”.
I was having none of it. Following several unanswered calls, I drove to the feckless moron’s house and told him to “Get it sorted,” otherwise he’d be getting no final payment. The man with the pitifully low IQ exploded, and, punctuated by a set of expletives, ordered me to “Shut up and go away you silly cow or I’ll shut you up. I’ll dump you in the Liffey”. My response… “If you do, you’ll be the massive splash that follows me ‘cos I’ll grab hold of your big fat useless ass and drag you down with me”. Pillars were re-built the next morning; original (not inflated) balance was paid; builder never darkened my door again.
However, this time round, the builders were plumbers John and Séan and the tilers were Mick and Paul. The team was headed up and organised by Derek, who locked in a start date with me and stuck to it. G’wan ya boy ya. Derek also answered my calls and texts straight away; which was so reassuring, because it showed he was client-focused and it told me he was organised. Well done Derek.
Every one of these men were good, hard-working, decent Roscommon gents who came to our home and took control of the job! Outstanding lads…amazing. In fact, so remarkable, I could not believe my luck! I’d been dreading this home invasion for so long my stomach was going into spasm; especially as I had to deal with a very sick and incapacitated hubby on the same week. These men however, arrived when they said they would…to the minute. What a breath of fresh air!
These men were professionals and went through the process with me of how I wanted the work done and how they were going to tackle it. I don’t speak builder, so luckily, (being my OCD self) I had photographs saved on my ‘phone to illustrate what I wanted. Struggling to understand my unintelligible banter of “Can ya put the thingies with the decorations here, and make a pattern out of them and then stick the other yokes around there”, tiler Mick laughed, but he was delighted to see I’d taken the initiative. These men were also courteous, spotless in so much as they cleaned up after themselves as they worked in subtropical heat, and they didn’t stop until they got the job done. I have to say readers, for once, due to the professionalism of Derek, Séan, John, Mick and Paul, Miriam has absolutely nothing to complain about this week! And my bathroom is fabulous!
Showing solidarity with Emma
Mother-of-five Emma Mhic Mhathúna settled her case against the HSE and a US laboratory for €7.5 million last week. Emma, readers will remember, is one of 209 women affected by the cervical cancer scandal and, instead of arriving in court in a no-nonsense suit, this extraordinarily brave lady rocked up in a fabulous floor-length, off the shoulder Bardot-style evening gown bedecked in sparkly jewellery saying “red is a symbol for standing with women”.
We should all stand with this woman of strength, this woman of purpose, this woman who must struggle every day to smile through what is no doubt the mighty storm that is cancer. We should get behind this fearless fighter, whom, despite what must be her obvious concern for her kids’ future without her, has decided to keep going, to keep positive and to keep bringing light and sunshine into her family’s life. My respect and my heartfelt good wishes go out to Emma, to Vicky Phelan and to all the other women stricken by this disreputable smear test shambles.
Stop wasting water!
I can assure readers that I’m doing my bit to conserve the aul H20 by swapping water for vodka! But seriously, Ireland experiences a few days of sunshine and it plunges us into a drought, meaning when it comes to housing, health and now water, this country is fecked.
However, bear in mind, following the horrendous winter, farmers in Roscommon need to make hay while the sun shines and they must look after their animals who desperately need lifesaving water. Soooo, stop wasting water on your lawns; stop washing your cars; stop hosing down your cobble drive and stop filling paddling pools. In short, don’t be a dope and leave a bit of water for those who critically need it.