Water and electricity are two things you take for granted in your house. Well I don't. Not since moving to my apartment in Talpiyot. I suppose it would be unimaginable for my utilities to be working for two months straight. The horror of an uninteresting domestic life!
Last month was our water saga. We didn't have water for a week, but our downstairs neighbors did. From their ceiling. They knocked on our door one day to tell us that water was dripping down their walls. My roommate was home then and shut off the water. I came home after an 8 am calculus class (that lasted 4 painful hours), another class, and then work until 10:30 to an apartment with no running water. This did not make me happy. Pouring water from a bucket down the toilet in order to flush it is not a fun nightly activity. My roommate was having a little party with 2 Polish friends, my other roommate and her date, and lots of alcohol. I'm not much of a drinker but when they offered me something, I took it. After finishing my glass of wine with a shot of vodka I was done for the night.
The next day the insurance company sent over a plumber. To many people the plumber is almost a minor godlike figure. You don't know what the heck he's talking about but you believe that he will make everything all better. So when he went to check out our neighbors' apartment and told us he didn't see any water we believed him. We said “thank G-d!” and turned our water back on. The next day the neighbors came back up to complain that there was still water flowing from places where there is not supposed to be water. Maybe the plumber had just gotten back from a 40 year vacation in the Sinai because it seemed he was unable to identify water. A plumber who doesn't know what water looks like is a useless plumber. But this is who the insurance company sent. He came back the next day and my other roommate had to take him downstairs and point out the water. After a few minutes my roommate was able to explain to him what exactly water is supposed to look like and he understood that the little droplets of wetness were in fact a leak from our bathroom.
Mr. Brilliant and his crew came back on Thursday afternoon (a few hours late) to get to work. I had to go to work so the last I saw of them they had ripped up parts of the bathroom and were smoking in it. That night I went back to Ma'ale Adumim to my parents so I wouldn't have to deal with the wreckage where our bathroom used to be.
Sunday morning I came back to the wreckage that was supposed to be our finished bathroom. There were now unmatching tiles on parts of the walls, the faucets in the tub and in the sink were not attached to the wall but were being held up by globs of grout, there were more globs of grout all over the walls, in the bathtub and in the sink, and they had switched the hot and cold water in the bathtub. They even broke our broom which I didn't realize when I tried to clean up the mess. I've now added broom as number ten on my list of strange objects I've cut my hand on.