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Quarrels would not last long if the fault were only on one side - Fran├žois de la Rochefoucauld

>> 10 December 2007

The works for the extension of our house are almost finished. Thank I don't know who for that. What a hassle construction works can be. I must say however that the big works of the beginning (digging, construction etc) went quite smoothly compared to the finishing touches of the end.

The problem is when you have different trades that need to work hand in hand. Say for example you have a large bay window installed that needs electric blinds. To start with, the window company outsources the blinds to the blinds company. The blinds company needs the the electrician to provide the connection cable from the indoor switch. The electrician installs this cable. The blinds company comes to install the boxes containing the blinds and considers that the electricity cable is not at the right location (i.e. in the -net yet installed- blinds box) and informs me that the electrician will connect the blinds. In the meantime, the insulation, frontage and paint coats are added to the outside of the house - enclosing the cable. The electrician comes and does not want to damage the newly made frontage for fear of having to pay reparation works. Oh and it's not his responsibility to connect the blinds but that of the blinds people.

Today the electrician and the blinds company were here and none of them recognized a fault in the whole story. As diplomatically as a pregnant woman is able to, I told them that I don't give a rat's ass whose fault it is, I just want it fixed. But none of the two wants to do it : it's not their fault or responsibility so it's not their job. They have both made the journey out here in order to quibble about it but not to fix the problem.

The architect arrives and participates in the argument. It is finally decided (by the blinds people) that the electrician will do it with supervision of the blinds guy and that one hour will be invoiced to the blinds people.

During the entire process of connecting the thing (which took no more than 15 minutes) they continued to argue about whose fault and responsibility it was and their reasons for not doing it etc. I couldn't believe my ears and had already proposed to connect the thing myself if they only told me what I needed to do.
The most unbelievable point is that they were both there on company time ready to leave again without having solved anything. Noone in this business wants to think a bit further than their own trade. I find that very deplorable.

Anyhow... we still have a minor issue to solve between the electrician and the heating guys and I think I will immediately propose to do it myself (remember I am pregnant) in order to get them going... :-)

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If your daily life seems poor, do not blame it; blame yourself, tell yourself that you are not poet enough to call forth its riches - Rainer M. Rilke

>> 3 December 2007

My daily life is far from poor. Any woman pregnant with number two can confirm that.


My son is sleeping and I was looking for something at The Clearing Space to take my mind off daily stress and hormones. This post triggered below story.

Today I was sitting on the couch having a bowl of cereal when my son absolutely insisted on sitting on my lap. Of course he was at the same time pulling the bowl out of my hand. Imagine cereal, (cold!) milk and fruit all over me, my son and the couch. What do you do first? Clean yourself? your son? the couch? As I got up, all the cereal that was glued to me by the milk fell to the floor and couch making the mess territory even bigger.
That's when I couldn't handle it anymore. Being pregnant, my tolerance level is lowered by silly things called hormones. And I do get irritated and discouraged a lot easier. I would have gladly handed the whole picture over to my other half (which is what I sometimes do lately when I can't seem to manage anymore), but he was at work. My son immediately felt that something was up and my tears only made him queasy. So I swallowed my tears and started undressing (no use in taking the mess elsewhere in around house) myself and son quickly (we are in the middle of works for an extension of our house and curtains have not yet been delivered...) and dashed into the bedroom to put on my sweat suit.

I grabbed the vacuum cleaner (when you're in the middle of construction works, it's never far away) and started by vacuuming all the cereal bits from couch, floor and clothing. My son loves the vacuum cleaner and I handed it to him to complete the task (well...keep him busy) and started cleaning the milk and fruit stains from couch and floor. You have to imagine me doing this with a big belly that at this point just gets in the way of EVERYthing.

OK. Done. It took me about 20 minutes (pregnant women are slower at everything) and I was exhausted afterwards. Of course, my son then did not want to let go of the vacum cleaner and threw a fit :-) But I had already spilled all my hormones and energy and couldn't be bothered by that. I put him to bed for his afternoon nap which he accepted, if under protest.
Now I feel calm again. I know this or similar events happen to all of us every day. It wasn't even bad as noone got hurt. I just thought it interesting how easy we can become overwhelmed by the small things that happen to us (even when we're not pregnant). I guess if it weren't for my son, I'd have given into a crying fit, conquered. But I didn't and I am proud of that.

Daily life is full of little victories and satisfactions :-)

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