Wednesday, October 13, 2010

brick avalanche

I know our house is a little dilapidated, a little higgledy-piggledy, and happens to be sinking in some areas.

The one side of the kitchen is higher than the other side. So when, for instance someone is taking stuff out of the fridge, I'm standing a foot higher when standing next to the dryer.

But that's to be expected. I mean, the house is a hundred years old and our landlord does live in Cheltenham and doesn't seem to realise half the time that he actually owns a house.

The landlord. A middle-aged Italian man who doesn't care much for health & safety.

If you know anything about Britain, you'll know that this nation cares a lot about health & safety. Almost Germanically so. In fact, in some instances they'd put the Swiss to shame.

For instance, at lunch, I stepped over the rope that divides the queues. I was holidng a glass of orange juice. From the cavernous recesses of the kitchen, the booming voice of the head chef:
Oy! OY! You can't step over that rope! Health & Safety will be on us like there's no tomorrow!

'Er...but there's no queue...and I'm...nimble.'

Well you can just fank your lucky stars nobody saw that.

'It's a fucking rope. That is three inches off the floor.'

Luigi, our landlord, had this to say when the Ozzie told him about the mice that seem to be scurrying around our premises at the moment.

"You must-a get a cat-a. Zey are good for-a catching a-mice."

I don't think we need to relay back-and-forth on why a cat is not a viable long-term solution for potentially, say, The Plague.

When we suggested getting Rentokil in there, or something to block the mouse holes at the back of the cupboards he said, "Eet is old house. Zere well be lots-a of holes-a."

So there's that. And then there's the roof.
It's falling down.

Our Northern Irish flatmate, who's a constructional engineer, took a look up in the loft last night after a brick landslide happened right above my bed.

Loud bang that nearly bought the whole fucking house down.

He said (I think. I need a translator around this dude), "Potatoes, this thing will blow, ratatatatat after one big storm like."

The beams are bending, the chimney has fallen down inside, and my head is right below this potential disaster.

I'm henceforth moving my room around. Then we're calling the lawyers.

"Are we going to die?" I directed the question to the house last night.

"No just move where your bed from where it is right now."

"Will there be an avalanche of bricks that cascade onto our sleeping bodies?"

"There might be, but I think the ceiling will hold the bricks in."

Might need to wear a crash helmet to bed. Should make for interesting sexy time.


capclassique said...

Can't help you with the bricks, but re: mice I've found one foolproof solution (which is just as well because I'm farking terrified of mice and there's a damn lot of them in London). Electronic mouse scaring device (not the technical term). Has electronic pulses to make them feel sick and emits high pitched wail to make them nervous. It's like sitting in a car with a hangover while the alarm goes off endlessly, I imagine. Needless to say, they bugger off and become someone else's problem. Trust me, it's the only way forward.

Secret said...

I think I am going to find an Irish person to live with - your "translations" are hilarious!

This place reminds me of the flat I stayed in previous to the last one I stayed in (excluding the one i am currently living in - basically 3 flats ago) had roof rats, a leaky skylight which leaked right on my head when it rained (and the room was too small to move furniture around) and a serious mould problem...and as well as being very skew-floored. The washing machine once flooded the place out, the floor was so skew that my room (which was on the same level as the washing machine) stayed dry, as did the lounge - which was on the same floor as my house-mates room (and her room was so flooded that everything was floating.

Last bit: we stayed in that place for 3 months, when we moved out, we took a bag of flour out of the kitchen cupboard that had completely black moulded over and turned solid from the damp (I am SURE cake flour is supposed to last longer than that!!).

Anyhow...point is: I know how ya feel :)