I know that I’m lucky. I hear other women discuss their men, bemoaning their general lack of handiness. For example, one friend had to spend a small fortune because a sock had worked its way outside the tub of her washer. Every load became a whumpety-whumpety-whump session that rivalled her kid’s time on his drum set, and neither she nor her husband had a clue how to fix it. Another had to hire a contractor to fix the do-it-yourself shed which became a health hazard.
That would never be me. I’d never have to put up with that bill. I’d never have to so much as strain my index finger to dial the phone.
All because I’m married to a handy man.
But there are two sides to every plywood plank, peeps, and this would be the other one of them:
Yup. That’s my sink. Boxing Day morning. When I’m expecting four guests for dinner and have a ton of prep to do.
What’s worse is that I had no warning — well, not quite true; I had no specific warning.
See, shortly after summer holidays, P noticed some water pooling on the cement floor of our basement. It wasn’t much — just a few tablespoons — but once he had shuffled his shop contents around, removed the vapor barrier, stripped off the insulation and examined it, we had a confirmed leak. He figured it came from a cracked wall and would have to wait until he had a chunk of time.
That was fine with me. I have had enough experience with home renovations to know that every day they’re delayed is one more day I actually have hair to style. Plus, there are these laws to contend with:
1. The repair will occur at the time of biggest inconvenience. (I enter the above photo, Your Honor, as incontrovertible evidence.)
2. It will somehow manage to interfere with one or more meal preparations, even if it occurs on a different floor in a different room. (Ditto.)
3. Despite being available by phone/text/personal availability 24/7, its scheduling will occur without discussion. (Hence my surprise at the timing of the photo above, Your Honor.)
4. At minimum, it will cost twice as much as originally expected.
5. It will take three times longer than originally estimated. (Yes, I have evidence. Twenty-five years’ worth of it.)
Now, I will repeat that I know I am lucky, because some of you are getting defensive on my husband’s behalf. A good portion of these things are beyond his control, after all, and despite these…idiosyncracies, P gives freely of his time and effort to keep our home running. Plus, there’s one more law that far outweighs numbers one through five:
incontrovertible rule #6:
Despite how messy, costly, inconvenient, and lengthy a home repair might be, once P has touched it, one can only marvel at its craftsmanship. Hurricanes might plague our temperate climes, seas swarm the prairies, Steven Harper win a majority in the House of Commons next term, but despite these clear signs of the impending Apocalypse, P’s repair will stand.
Now that I think of it, he’s in the hope business too. Yes… I like that! I like that a lot. Beyond the financial savings, reliability and convenience of having someone so handy in the home, there is poetry in my sink. Social activism, even. (Pardon me. I’m just having a personal revelation here and it can get a little maudlin.)
Anyway, have you got a handyman/woman/person in your life? On the whole do they drive you crazy or make you weak at the knees in appreciation? Got any construction rules to add to mine?