But first, a thought for the day. On my favourite radio religious programme TWR an Irish pastor was speaking about his work and told us of one of the most effective prayers he had ever heard ‘Lord, make me a link in the chain of thy purpose’. In other words we should not see ourselves as needing to be in the public eye or loved or be a key part of anything but as part of a chain where we are influenced by and influence others. When I think of the huge challenge of the damage and potential harm wrought by Smart Meters never mind the forthcoming 5G there is no way I can do it by myself but I can spread the word, encourage others, be there for people, be a reliable reference point and other 24/7 things which will never make the local media never mind the National press or TV.
Another phrase which struck me this morning was the advice to ‘run away from evil’. The speaker was saying that this is not about cowardliness but about the fact that you should not consult with or argue with the devil and if someone is showing signs of malevolence or even the best thing may be to withdraw. It is unlikely that such a person will listen to you and it is very unwise to get drawn into a whirlpool of anger and hatred and ignorance.
Sometimes I can have too much imagination for my own good. It started with a slight dribble of water down the side of the wash basin in the bathroom and then increased to a fine spray.We placed a large dishcloth over the spray to create a miniature waterfall which we diverted into a bucket. We called our ever-reliable plumber Robert but he was not available until the next day.
I would like to record what went on in my mind. It I followed the chain of activities to make sure as far as possible that whatever happened would not result in an expensive and inconvenient flood i.e. have plan B and then plan C. The stopcock to the bungalow is in a bedroom surrounded by clothes and papers. I tried to turn it off with no success. It was well and truly stuck. So I decided to visit the stopcock in the road and figure out how to turn off the supply. In so doing I found as ever YouTube to be of incredible value. There was a video entitled “how to turn off your stopcock in the street”. Unfortunately the stopcock is about the length of my arm down from the street so I opened up the small manhole cover and had to reach down through muddy water to try and find it.
I’m glad I don’t have nosy neighbors because they would’ve seen me lying on my front of the street at 10:30 at night. Anyway I realized that as the whole area was full of water I would have to bail it out; finally I found the little tab which you’re supposed to turn 45% to the right. Again I did not have the right tools so that drew a blank as well. I was therefore vulnerable to an escalation of the situation.
I then decided that the only alternative was to stop an escalation of the leak and I cut a piece of garden hose to fit it over the spray. This appeared to succeed, the noise stopped, and I was able to go to bed in a reasonable state of quietude.
We went next morning to find the noise a bit louder; Robert was due to come only at 3 PM. so we had to stay ‘on duty’ so to speak watching for every sound. I decided if the leak became worse I would turn on other taps to minimize the pressure.
Robert turned up in the afternoon and diagnosed the problem which was a wearing out of a part (illustrated above). He said that cheap materials of which this was an example were often used and said that he would have paid three times as much as this Chinese product knowing that it would last indefinitely or at least many times longer.
He managed to open stopcock in the house, and had the tool to close the stopcock in the street altogether. I have decided to order a ‘turner-offer’ which by the way is due to arrive as I write from B and Q so that if this happens in the future, I will know what to do. He advised us to turn the internal stopcock on and off once a month to prevent seizing up.
Robert told me about a situation of someone to whom a leak happened when they were on holiday and on returning they found that the bath had overflowed, the water had taken down the ceiling of the kitchen downstairs and caused about 10,000 pounds worth of damage.
I’m quite pleased with myself that I was able to avoid panic, to plan ahead and make the most of the learning situation so that if it happens again I will know what to do. I don’t know what I would’ve done if water had been gushing out but then that is what house insurance is for.