Saturday, 18 April 2015

Bathroom Diaries Day Three And Four

Days three and four would be Wednesday and Thursday of our hell renovations. I am combining the two days, because day three would be more verbal than visual. Verbalising my anger and frustration would not even be a true reflection of just how angry I was on Wednesday when I arrived home.

At the outset I have to say that I do not appreciate Sheila enough and sometimes she makes me so mad, but that is normally because of a breakdown in communication. Sheila's English is really bad, which is rich coming from someone who cannot speak her language or any of the other 10 official languages. Yes, we have 11 official languages (for any non South Africans reading this). The Americans are all about being bigger and better, but no one beats us in the official language department. Anyway back to the subject at hand. On Tuesday when I arrived home from work I thought that the workers were really tidy and respectful of our stuff - NOT A CHANCE!!!

On Wednesday Chad finishes school late and has been cycling to school, so I had to take him to gym late and decided to just leave work at 3 for the day and not fight the traffic back to work for an hour. I arrived home to find people all over my bedroom and bathroom and noise and mess and water everywhere in the bathroom that they are busy with and water pouring out of the taps in my bathroom and of course the owner of the company nowhere to be seen. I asked Sheila why they were in my bedroom and she said she does not know, which made me even more angry. What she meant is that she knows they are working in my bathroom, but doesn't know why they abandoned one flooded bathroom to go into my bathroom. That is the problem with builders/renovators whatever you want to call them. Have six or seven jobs on the go and just drop workers off at each site.

I was livid and phoned Mark to tell him to get the Plumber to our house. I left to take Chad to gym, came back home whilst this commotion was going on, went to fetch Chad from gym, came back and the plumber was there and I was still angry. Understandably, it made sense to do the pipes in our bathroom at the same time, because they all link up and Mark knew about it. Lets just say Mark and I have a bigger communication barrier and we speak the same language. Although I wonder if we do - is selective hearing (Mark) and communicating on a need to know basis (Mark to Me) the same language or a foreign one? Mark did know about the pipes in our bathroom, but still the flooding and breaking of our mixer was not on the cards. I did not take photos of the mess, because if I stood there taking photos, I would have ended up punching someone or had a stroke.

Whilst they were flooding the bathrooms even more, I just walked to the kitchen and made coffee and went to sit in the lounge and thought just shut up. Image they walk out and leave the mess, considering they have received 75% of the money and it was only for the labour. We paying for all the fittings and materials. They eventually get the spraying water sorted and do a half assed attempt to tidy up and Sheila at 5.30 is busy cleaning their mess and making the house tidy, clean and presentable - she has been cleaning not them.

Mark also thought that we would take all the tiles off of our bathroom walls, because the skip (big red bin) is quite expensive and will only be half full and then we have to get another one - you only get it for five days. Mark fell asleep before I even bathed on Wednesday night and as I lay in the bath with holes and missing tiles, I was trying to visualise all the tiles being taken off the walls and using the bathroom. Needless to say I could not sleep that night and when Mark woke up on Thursday morning,  I said when he showers he must visualise standing in the shell of the other bathroom and see what it would be like. It took awhile and the penny dropped - we would be standing in sand mud whilst showering. So they only took some of the tiles off the walls and left the shower.

We went to buy the tiles on Thursday for the first bathroom. We went to CTM and decided on the black and white tiles they had in the very first display we saw as we walked in the door. I was very impressed with the service at CTM compared to Builder's Warehouse. As we walked in, someone came to us and said they will organise a sales person. We walked around a bit and the salesman came and he was very friendly and knowledgeable and brought samples of tiles to similar basins that we had already bought from Builders. In the end we chose what was already displayed. They have a little coffee bar and he arranged two cappuccinos, whilst he worked out the costs and invoice and we sat at the coffee bar drinking our cappuccinos. Totally different to Builder's Warehouse where you walk up and down practically begging for assistance. We really needed those cappuccinos when we saw the price of the tiles. We managed the shock on Sunday when the fittings were way over budget, but Mark kept saying we spending the money on making the bathroom look nice, lets not skimp on price and buy cheap stuff. Well now we have totally blown our budget and one bathroom has cost more than what we planned on spending on both bathrooms. R169.00 a square meter for tiles seems cheap, after all what can you buy for R169.00 and our bathroom is tiny. In our eagerness not to skimp, we totally disregarded the fact that R169.00 is very expensive for a square meter and we are tiling our bathroom roof height. Our house does not have ceilings, so the bathroom might be tiny, but to roof height it is not. We also did not EVEN ask the price of the patterned tiles that we bought :(

We also decided to get an electrician to move the bathroom light. Seriously who puts a light behind a door. You can see our house was designed by a man in the 70's  - no idea. Our house is so badly designed, either that or they ran out of electrical wiring. Looking at this picture now, the electrician that moved the light, did not put it in the middle either.

We arrived home on Thursday with the tiles etc at 1pm - 1.2 tons of stuff and our house was calm, clean, quiet and tidy. They had left for the day. Sheila had already managed to clean and make the house look presentable. Renovations are not for the faint hearted and I am faint hearted - very faint hearted, easily stressed, angered and annoyed.

They didn't break the cistern lid, it was broken already and one of the top priority reasons for needing to do the bathroom. We could not get a lid to fit the cistern and had to buy a whole new cistern. My pinterest picture is starting to blur completely and I am battling to see the end result at the end of this very long and dusty tunnel. Actually we have diverted totally from the pinterest picture and in fact from all of the ones in my collection, but it will look better than what we had.

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