My new BFF: Alain the Plumber #JusJoJan Day 5 – Gurgle

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

“No, no, no!” I wailed as I stood, sink stopper in hand, listening for the healthy gurgle of water draining from the sink and gushing down the pipes to wherever it is dirty dish water goes. Instead, there was only silence as I watched the dirty dish water circle painfully-slowly and lazily in the sink.

This is a familiar situation in our house. Because the slant of the pipes is not steep enough, every few years, debris accumulates along the way and clogs the pipes. But this was New Year’s Eve. In a pandemic. It’s as if the debris conspired to gather for a clandestine celebration just to spite us.

I asked Ben to come and take a look. He poked around in the sink and … success! Slowly but steadily the water drained and disappeared to wherever it is that dirty dish water goes. Then, a few hours later, I discovered exactly where it is that dirty dish water goes – at least when the pipes are clogged.

I opened the top of our washing machine to do a load of laundry and there it was. Clearly, this was a job for a professional. But again, it was New Year’s Eve. In a pandemic. What plumber in his right mind would want to celebrate the end of one of the worst years we have known by being elbow-deep in dirty water?

Thank goodness for small miracles!  Small Miracle #1:  One of Ben’s clients is a plumber who lives close by; Small Miracle #2: His wife/assistant answered the phone – on December 31st!  Small Miracle #3: Alain, the plumber in question, came and fixed the problem within an hour.

Pandemic restrictions or not, he was already in our house and it was New Year’s Eve. “Offer the man a glass of wine,” I whispered to Ben. And so it came to be that we gratefully toasted the end of 2020 (safely physically distanced) and welcomed 2021 with Alain the plumber!

Written for Just Jot It January’s word for Day 5: Gurgle.

Quarantine Question: Who is that woman???

I’ve been back in the office since early September after working from home for several months. As the second wave of COVID-19 hits, I think my husband is hoping I stay there. Being quarantined with me had him shaking his head and asking “Who is that woman?” because it turned me into either Suzy Homemaker, Martha Stewart or my mother.

I know, it’s hard to believe. I’ve always been the girl who had little interest in home décor or, really, home anything. But quarantine changed all that! For example, one day while attending a Zoom meeting from my living room, I decided the accent décor just had to go. Before you could say “quarantine”, I had ordered new curtains and a rug from two different websites. It’s only when I hung the curtains that I realized they matched the rug! Who knew? I wish I could say it was because of my attention to detail or my flair for decorating but it was just a happy coincidence. That and the fact that I like diamond patterns.

One weekend, I made enchiladas, a chicken curry and a big pot of soup. All with one package of deboned chicken breasts. You know those cooking shows that teach you how to make three meals in 30 minutes for under $10? Well, I could have given them a run for their money. (OK, it took longer than 30 minutes and cost maybe more than $10).

When I was at home, I swept the kitchen floor, dusted or vacuumed on my health breaks. One day I was cleaning the bathroom sink and I looked in the mirror and I swear my mother was looking back at me.

Want to know what I did on my summer vacation? On the spur of the moment, I decided to paint the washroom. When I’d finished, I got down on my hands and knees and cleaned the grout on the floor tiles. I was beginning to think there was something seriously wrong with me.

My newly-discovered domestic talents have gone back into hibernation since I returned to the office. But just in case we are quarantined again, I’m stocking up on home décor and cooking magazines.

Have you lost 10 lbs.? Don’t worry, I’ve got them!

When I stepped on the scale at my last medical appointment, I expected the result to be the same as it’s been for  years. Instead, the nurse slid the little weight along the metal bar PAST that number and kept going.  I knew my clothes felt a little snug lately, but nothing drastic. Ten pounds later, that darned bar finally stood balanced between the scale’s notches.

“That can’t be right,” I almost said out loud, but bit my tongue. Still, I thought, how unprofessional of them to use equipment that’s clearly not working efficiently.  I rarely use our home scale but I jumped on it as soon as I got home, just to prove a point.  And there they were on my scale too, ten extra pounds!

They say you age ten pounds each decade as you get older. But this lot came all at once – in the last year or so since my last doctor’s appointment. Cheeky buggers.

So, I thought to myself, what should I do about this – cut out carbs? No problem. I was never big on them anyways. Reduce sugar. Sigh. If I have to. Eliminate wine on the weekend? Whoa, that’s where I draw the line. A girl’s got to have some fun.

So today, after a summer of regular walking, yoga and working out on the dreaded elliptical machine in my basement, I stepped onto the scale with trepidation.  Maybe I hadn’t lost the whole 10 pounds, but surely, I shed some of it, I thought. I watched as the needle crept up, past my goal weight, and right back to the same number registered in the doctor’s office.

So if you’ve lost ten pounds and you would like to claim them, I’ll gladly give them back. But somehow I think they’ve found a new forever home.