27 April 2006

Adventures with utilities

Some days the hot water won't arrive at the bathroom tap. Usually there's a good reason. Sometimes I have to turn off the shower for a minute and try again. Sometimes I use the sink to get warm, then start the shower. I'm trying to trick it into letting me have a normal temperature shower.

Today poor Dar was standing in the tub, ready to shower shall we say, and he called to me to go downstairs and check the breaker. We have this issue where the washing machine, microwave, dryer, and a power strip with appliances conflict with one another. No, they are not all in the same plug. They are in different places in the house even. Anyway, when one too many get started; it all goes...away. The instant hot water system (also our heater) is over the washing machine/microwave area. It goes too.

Today the breaker wasn't flipped. Dar told me to do a re-light thing that involved flicking buttons on the water heating device. I flicked. The light with the gas symbol with a slash through it lit up. Dar had a cold shower.

Then Dar tried everything the landlord showed him. No dice. No gas. The landlord suggested talking to the neighbors. Somehow I found myself in the street. I tried to talk to the first person I saw. He was older and had a convuluted accent. I was getting maybe 20%. He was trying to get someone or something about a key. These are not my best Spanish moments. I can't put it all together under pressure. I was saying, "Tenemos gas." Then realizing I'm saying it wrong and trying to find other words...Another neighbor came out. I said again, "Tenemos gas." What did I say with some force and enthusiasm? We have gas. We have gas. (Aren't the neighbors glad I'm announcing this in the street!?) The new younger neighbor looks at me and says, "You can speak English..."

He found another button on the outside of the house. We have gas again.


  1. To the statement of "we have gas," I might have replied, "Have you tried bean-o?"

    Cold showers are the worst!

  2. Well, now you know where the button is. :)

    There are few things I hate more than a cold shower. There are few things I love more than a hot shower.

  3. It is comedic, if nothing else!

  4. cold showers...yuk.

    I would have to spend more time on this one then I am willing to spend at 1:30 in the morning...but I think I could come up with a riddle for it too! (see dar's blog/comments on Mc Auto.)

    Anyway, glad your younger English speaking neighbor was able to help you out! :)

  5. We have gas!
    We have gas!
    We have gas!

    -very funny!

  6. Anonymous11:18 PM

    Better than saying: Tenemos que pasar gas.

  7. I have to say the punch line was great...."you CAN speak English"!