Monday, January 28, 2013
On Friday I decided to tackle two jobs that have been outstanding for a while. One, to reroute some cables in my dining room, that requires taking apart two units to get to the back, and the other, to replace the pull light cord in my bathroom.
I removed all the books from the dining room units, and carefully labelled all the various cables running in and out of the DVD player, Sky box and television, being quite creative with different coloured insulating tapes! I then disconnected them and put them out of the way. How to get the units apart? It looked like the only way was to take off the tops, then slide out the plywood backs. Screwdrivers in hand, off we go.
I always forget what a big, strong chap my husband was! I remembered how I used to have to get him to take off the handbrake in the car before I could move it. Just why he had to screw everything so tight I will never know, the classic was when I had to get him to turn the taps back on before I could wash up, and Iím not particularly feeble! Anyway these screws are on for good. I decided to leave it, and ask my son to loosen them when he pops in next before I ruined the heads of the screws and made them totally unremovable!
On to job two! Of course itís in the most awkward place possible, and above my head too. I take off the rose and start to unscrew the only two screws I can see, and I can only use my fingertips on the screwdriver handle because its so close to the wall. Wrong, the bit pops off the ceiling leaving the cord still attached! Screw them back, as tight as I can, and reassess the situation.
AH, there are two tiny Phillips screws a little lower down. Start to unscrew them. I didnít realize that there was a large spring in there, and as it decompresses, the whole thing leaps out of the ceiling and lands with a clatter on the floor! Start to pick up the bits, at least the knotted cord kept most of the pieces together, and itís only the tiny screws I have to find. Undo the knot, slide out the cord and we should be ready to reassemble it!
Unfortunately, as I slide the pieces off the cord, a small bit I hadnít previously noticed drops out and disappears onto the floor, again. That bit found, I carefully put on the new cord and put it all back together.
Back up the ladder. I now need at least three hands! I canít put both screws into the holes while holding against the spring and operating a screwdriver at the same time. Screwdriver stuffed in my cardigan, I battle to hold it all together. At this point, my ginger cat Archie, who has been sitting on the side of the bath, watching the entire proceedings with considerable interest, decides itís all getting boring now, and with considerable aplomb, stretches up and sharpens his claws on my bottom!
With a rude word I let go, and the whole thing flies across the room and ends up on the floor again!
I FINALLY find all the pieces, the smaller spring finally turning up in the cats (mercifully clean) litter tray, but now of course, I have absolutely no idea how it went together. Archie banished to the garden, I sit down and start trying to work out how to get it back together.
At the third attempt, I think I have it, so back up the ladder I go. This time I carefully put one screw in, and place the other on the top of the door frame, then start to screw it all back together. Then suddenly all the lights come on!
I scream and jump, the whole thing flies across the room, and lands on the floor, AGAIN, an extremely rude word is spoken, and yours truly nearly needs clean underwear!
By now, Iím getting quite good at putting it all back together. I go downstairs to the fuse box, and switch off the upstairs lights, back upstairs, up the ladder, then with a satisfying Ďclickí the whole unit pops into the ceiling and is screwed in. So confident am I, that I screw the rose back to the ceiling and put the ladder away! I switch the fuse back on, pull the cord and we have.....NOTHING! Not a click, not a glimmer!
So tomorrow, I will go to my local DIY store and buy a whole unit, that I can just put straight back in. I will NOT give in!