Monday, September 13, 2010

The day didn't start out badly. I woke up very early, finished watering the yard by 7, finished the blue top I'd been knitting (it fits, but doesn't look terrific), and got a call that the installer for the new appliances wouldn't be out until after 3 pm. Okay. I decided to get some sun while starting a class I'm taking to refresh my nursing license, in case I need to go back to work.

First, I couldn't find my new swimsuit, so I put on an old one. It was a little tight, so I pulled a muscle or two in my back, putting it on. One doesn't need a good back to lie in the sun and read, so I went on with the next stage of my plan-- sunbathe while studying. I went inside in time to take a bath (the hot water didn't help my back as much as I had hoped) and dress before the installer arrived. Before the installer came, I had to move some bookcases to make the doorway large enough to get the dishwasher into the kitchen.

Well, moving bookcases *does* require a good back, so I got Tom to help me. I realized the installer would need some elbow room, so I also cleared off the kitchen island, including the set of shelves that hold our tea. I had already cleared out the areas under the sink, and under the cooktop, per previous instructions.

The installer wasn't as late as he could have been; he arrived around 3:30. He took one look at the dishwasher, and one look at the space in the kitchen, and told me it wouldn't fit. It was 3/8 of an inch too tall for the space. While it was the same brand as the one it was replacing, the company had been bought out by another, which changed the measurements of their dishwashers. I asked him if he could make it fit by taking a sledgehammer to the tile (I've done tile work before), but he said it wouldn't work. There wasn't any room.

Then he went to the cooktop. He couldn't find the electric outlet he'd need for the installation, so he removed my silverware drawers. It wasn't there, so he emptied out one of my cupboards, and removed the built-in oven. Still no outlet. It became my job to empty another cupboard-- the outlet was there. Then, since the outlet was too far for the cooktop's cord to reach, I had to find a suitable three-prong extension cord. The one in the garage was too long, so I had to unplug some things in the living room to cannibalize that cord.

Then we got the estimate. Apparently, the money we had paid up front for installation was only for the routine stuff. Since our elderly cooktop wasn't hooked up according to current code, he had to replace the gas line and install a new cut-off switch for same. It was also grouted in, so he had to take it out with a chisel, causing a bit of damage to the tile counter. And, he had to drill through a couple of walls to make a place for the extension cord. The damage? $274, on top of the $119 we had already paid. Uh-- I think that's more than the cooktop cost. And, he couldn't put it on my Home Depot account (0% interest for one year) in the absence of a physical card, which hadn't come in the mail yet. Oh, well. And he couldn't haul away the old one free, as had been the original deal-- only the delivery guys could do that. And, as we didn't find out until after he had left, he broke one of the silverware drawers while putting it back in; it took twenty minutes and some major tugging and finessing to get it open, fixed, and back in.

So, after a whole day of shopping, 8 days of waiting, and $1300 spent (so far), I have a nice, new cooktop, a dining room packed to the gills with stuff removed from kitchen cupboards, an old cooktop, and a new dishwasher still in the box. The irony is that 1) I was still able to use the old cooktop. It was bad, but still functional. It's the dishwasher that totally doesn't work, and 2) the Home Depot card came in today's mail, which we picked up as soon as we had gotten the silverware drawer fixed, 20 minutes after it would have done us any good.

I sent Tom out for pizza. I didn't feel like cooking, even though I had a nice, new cooktop, and our two favorite local pizza joints are closed Mondays. I wonder why I have a headache?


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