Thursday, April 28, 2011

Really Spoiled.

Waiting for the other shoe to drop here, since the weather we've been having has been absolutely beautiful lately.
I mean, it rained in the evening some last night, and probably didn't help matters in the traffic department, but that certainly didn't have any effect on my life.
Question:  Is it "affect" or "effect"?
Bet you're wondering.
It didn't have any psychological "affect", and certainly didn't have any "effect" on my behaviour.
That just makes it more confusing.
Never mind.

Well,  I wouldn't call it a "hobby" actually,  but I do cringe ever so slightly when folks who think they can write can't tell the difference between "choose",  "chose",  "to" "too",  "lose" "loose" etc.

Just a pet peeve of mine.

Where was I?

I have to kind of scurry along here as I have an appointment at 11:30 to get the summer tires put on the car,  and considering that I seem to be running a little behind this morning,  I may not be able to spit everything out here.
 It's perhaps due to Travelling Companion being in another country,  but of course I woke up in the middle of the night and absolutely could not get back to sleep again.  Gah!

Never mind how late I then slept.  Feeling kind of guilty about that. Doesn't usually happen.

In typical fashion I snoop around the net looking for the latest news,  and I think my jaw dropped just ever so slightly to read AGAIN that people in the States have been walloped by severe weather.  
I mean,  I realise there's some risk involved when living in "Tornado Alley",  but when this kind of event goes through a built up area,  the results can be devastating.

Nowadays too,  we all seem to "know" someone,  somewhere,  and there are folks in Birmingham, (and in this case I do mean Alabama,  not the UK)  that I'm at least aware of?
Hard to really say you know someone from reading their blog,  and it's a curious thing when these kinds of remote events tend to affect us,  (there's that word again) even though they may be total strangers.  
Am I making any sense?
When someone puts into print how they feel when their dog dies,  one can't help but feel something.
It's usually sadness.
I should point out here,  that I was actually going to refer back to a post about losing a pet from about a week or so ago ,  and couldn't believe when I saw that these folks had actually lost a SECOND dog. 

This is probably the number one reason why I simply choose not to have a pet.  It's perhaps a selfish streak I know, but it's just very hard to part company with them when the time comes.    These folks once had five dogs.  They've lost two in as many weeks. 
I think the term, "having your heart broke"  comes to mind?
Too many of our friends and relatives have had their hearts broken when their pets die. 

So now finally our "toilet talk".

I'll try not to drag it out,  I promise.

See,  since getting back from Rome,  my memory has been refreshed when it comes to some of the amazing accomplishments that were achieved during the Roman Empire.  Not only were entire cities built,  and roadways created,  the evidence of which is still visible today,  but they also had many conveniences that we take for granted in our every day lives.

One of those things was some form of indoor plumbing.  

Here's the thing though,  judging by the function of the water closet in our hotel room on the weekend,  I had the impression that their technology hadn't really improved much in the last 2000 years or so.  
It looked like a normal toilet,  with the tank built into the wall,  which is something that I've gotten quite used to,  but its operation was by means of what one could only describe as a push button in the wall.
 OK well,  that should work,  shouldn't it?

 Not really.

There was so much plumbers grease in the mechanism that it refused to operate properly the whole time we were there.   The first night,  after the first flush,  it proceeded to dribble and flush,  then dribble and flush throughout the whole night.  Being as we were pretty much exhausted,  we slept through it.
 I brought it to the attention of the front desk in the morning,  and they must have done something,  since it did work for a while the next day.
And this is how I know there was so much plumbers grease in the valve,  since I took the f**king thing apart,  only to discover that it was the stupidest damned arrangement I had ever seen in my life! 
There was no way of actually getting the valve unstuck unless you had a pair of needle nose pliers.  

 For those who may be somewhat challenged in the tool identification department,  they look like this...

Note the pointy bits....

They sort of frown on those types of things at airport security,  so I had left mine at home.


To make things even more interesting,  the bowl hadn't been properly attached to the floor,  so unless you could sit perfectly still on the seat, (hello!  need to wipe from time to time!)  the thing would work loose,  and at one point before we were heading out on Sunday morning to catch a glimpse of the Pope,  it got to the point where,  instead of the water rushing into the bowl,  it simply rushed out onto the floor.

Fun times!

Try to picture a guy jumping out of the way with his trousers down around his knees.

Man,  that was close!
I had noticed there was a built in drain in the floor,  only a couple feet from the toilet bowl.   I quickly understood why it was there.  Good planning.

Oh,  and when you pack as light as we tend to do,  you can't very well have your trousers getting drenched by some poorly installed Roman plumbing.  

Hence the little jig.

We left it for the cleaning staff,  and it was all tidied up and put back together,  albeit temporarily,  when we got back later that day. 
The thing was though,  we never quite knew exactly what was going to happen when pressing that button.

 Even if the thing did flush,  it seemed to take at least a minute to make up its mind,  and then there would be an ungodly whoosh!  

So the routine was:

Push button.
Leave the bathroom.
Make sure the door is closed.
Keep fingers crossed.


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Well, I've been getting too many spam comments showing up. Just a drag, so we'll go another route and hope that helps. So, we won't be hearing anything more from Mr. Nony Moose.
I guess I'll just have to do without that Gucci purse.