My writing has ‘gone for a Burton’ this past week due to the ongoing saga of home improvements. I have written very little and feel disappointed that I have allowed external forces to interfere with my work. Last week, despite an extremely distressing episode (more of that later), I was reasonably productive – probably now suffering from delayed shock – and submitted a short story to TAB, completed another ready for further edits before submission, re-drafted a poem that had lingered in a folder marked ‘Poetry’ for ages and entered it into a competition, and emailed two letters to a national magazine, one of which has already been published.
I’m sure I could have achieved even more had everything not turned pear-shaped by Thursday when ‘an incident’ occurred to throw me off schedule and into a maelstrom devoid of creativity. This ‘incident’ took the form of the plasterer downing tools and deciding he was taking off to Cornwall for an indiscriminate number of days, despite promising to finish the job that very day. As a result, come Friday and two texts and a telephone call later, we were forced to re-enact a scene from Les Miserables and take shelter behind the barricades with the police on speed dial. And all this because our tradesman turned rogue, releasing his inner demon like a disaffected circus elephant, or one of the stampeding African variety. The problem arises when you are called upon to defend yourself against one of these lumbering, clumsy bulls without the added safety feature of an elephant gun; believe me, it can be quite disconcerting.
I was accused of being ‘too pickay’, amongst other things, and bombarded with many expletives mostly beginning with the letter ‘f’ along with a smattering of some rhyming with ‘punt’ (and I don’t think he was confusing it with a little jaunt on the local canal). His diatribe also offered me the opportunity to take advantage of some free dental work, if you catch my drift, with the overall suggestion being: ‘How can you expect me to complete a building job without causing further damage in the process?’ Er, because I do! I know, I’m so unreasonable.
Anyway, the upshot is that a competent plasterer has now almost completed the work, whilst we continue to unearth a catalogue of errors of which we were primarily ignorant. Our finger remains poised over the speed dial button as the threats continue, via the telephone, from ‘a solicitor’ this time. (That is how the woman – exhibiting the same accent as our plasterer – addressed my husband when she called on a private number. No name, no practice details, just ‘a solicitor’ – I kid you not. Doesn’t take a genius to work out her identity, does it?)
Soon we shall be able to return to some semblance of normality and, hopefully, put this unfortunate episode behind us. But something tells me it’s not over yet. Until then, vive la révolution!
Image credit: tribalium123 / 123RF Stock Photo