Friday, February 14, 2014

Cyprus plumbing and construction...part two

Wednesday evening, while playing a game with Sue, Richard, and Tim, one of them asked or said something about my parents leaving, something like, "Did your parents departure go well this morning?" I said, "Yesterday, but yes, it was fine." It took the three of them and Jörn a few minutes to convince me that it HAD been that had been a very, very long day. (And I'd also fallen asleep while putting Helen to bed, so, well, I HAD slept again, so surely it was another day??)

So Wednesday morning, Jörn went over to our house to await the plumbers, and I piled the three girls, my parents, and my parents' luggage into the car. (They didn't have so much themselves, but they also had two suitcases from my brother, since my brother and his wife and daughter are moving back to California next month.) Then we went to Dena's house for my parents to say goodbye to Jacob and Lukas. While they were saying goodbye, though, Jörn called that the plumbers had arrived, so then Jörn picked up the boys and met us at the airport. Marie had already said goodbye the night before.

Jörn then went to work and the children and I went back to the flat. Konstantin took Helen and Elisabeth to the playground and Jacob went back to the house to work on his Coursera (free on-line classes from universities around the world) classes, and I did something approximating schoolwork with Lukas and Katie. (I think we read several chapters of Naya Nuki, and one of them maybe did math??)

The plumbers had told Jörn that we could move back in that afternoon, that the toilet would be done and we would have water. After lunch I'd gone over to talk with them (but couldn't find the camera...I'd put it somewhere too safe) and they kept insisting that it would be done, but I was extremely skeptical by this time. At 3:30, Jörn and I went to the house again (by which time I'd found the camera) on the way to our Greek class, and I took more photos and had more arguments in Greek with the plumbers. They'd laid new pipes and filled it all in with concrete, right up to the level of the tiles!

The shower was still a mess:

The toilet was still in the hallway:

The bathtub was a mess:

There were still piles of construction material on the sidewalk in front of the house:

And the man was insisting that that they would be finished TODAY, that the toilet would be fine, that we could move back in!!!

Finally, one of the plumbers/construction workers who spoke more English admitted that they were trying to hurry so we could move back in, but really, it would be better to wait. I said that he should PLEASE not hurry and do a bad job, but take the time they need and do it right. He seemed very relieved.

Apparently, he understood the "not hurry" part, but I really don't think that ANYONE understood the "do it right" bit. After our Greek class, we went back to see what had been done and lock up the house.

That morning, Lukas had remembered seeing pink tiles in the attic (a crawl-space above the laundry room and bathroom into which nobody bigger than Lukas will fit, but he'd explored it a few times...) and we'd gotten them out, so the workers used those for part of the bathroom floor, putting them in very badly, not to mention that they hadn't even taken OUT all of the tiles that they had chipped:

The bathtub tap was covered in spilled concrete:

The tiles were crooked in three dimensions:

And there were cat paw prints in the concrete on the kitchen terrace (okay, that's not really the fault of the workers, and I wonder whether these are prints of Makenzy or Connie, two very confused cats at the upheaval in the house).

That wasn't all we found...Marie, who had been over during the day to use the computer and bake a cake (not for us, though), had decided to add her own mark:

That evening we distributed teenagers again (Jacob to Panos's this time) and Lukas got the sofa bed, as we got the master bedroom.

And Sue, Richard, and Tim came down and played a game with us, the only relaxing time of the entire day.

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