Monday, June 23, 2008

Dodgy electrics

Tuesday 10th June 2008
Ian woke up this morning and it was bitter, the house was freezing so he put the air conditioning on to warm the place up. Unfortunately he had already turned on the Washing Machine and Tumble Dryer, so when he put a cup of milk in the Microwave to warm it up for Marisa the circuit went bang.
Not a problem, we used to get this from time to time in the Pub, just flick the switch and it all comes back on.
Wrong, Ian was standing out in the Carport in his dressing gown at 6.30am, rain and gale force wind blowing and temperatures close to zero. There was no switch, this house still has pieces of wire wound round a couple of screws to hold it tight as its main fuses. At this point Ian remembers the electrician that did our electrical survey saying, “you want to change those to RCB’s as soon as you can”, don’t you hate know alls.
Still, not a problem, the kids can get themselves dressed into something warm while Ian has a shower, which as luck would have it is run on gas.
Wrong, the kids did their bit no problem, but the shower would not warm up. Presumably the water pump or the spark to light the gas is operated by electric, Ian is not happy, he is cold and he never leaves the house in the morning without having a shower first. Today he had to and he didn’t like it one little bit.
As soon as the first two staff came in to work, Ian went with the kids to Bunnings to get an RCB. Should be fairly straightforward you might think, Wrong, in the UK Ian would have known exactly what to look for, over here the voltages are different and things are colour coded.
Ian, using his brain and doing what any self respecting shopper in a foreign land would do, asked the guy behind the electronics department counter for help. Not that good an idea, the guy was in charge of that counter but didn’t know anything about fuses other than that there were some on a shelf a bit further down the aisle. But Not a Problem, an electrician was due to come into the store at 11am so Ian would be able to ask him, the thought of Ian having to wait in his unwashed state for another two and a half hours on the off chance that (1) the electrician does actually turn up and (2) the electrician in question does actually know what an RCB is and which one Ian might want, was not improving his mood one iota.
In the end another member of staff, who didn’t know anything about electrics but knew how to read, saved the day. He knew where the fuses and RCB’s were, Read the destructions on the back of both and using his amazing powers of deduction managed to find the one Ian wanted.
Ian was out of Bunnings like a shot, drove home, fitted the RCB, had a shower, put on some clean clothes and got Marisa and Kristian to school with two minutes to spare.
Carolyn boarded her flight back to Australia today, Marisa and Kristian have started getting excited already and Ian is looking forward to a rest.

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