Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Plumbing perspectives

The Ark (not pictured) is a fixer-upper. That's why I was able to afford it, and I am grateful for the stained carpet, missing fixtures, overgrown yard, rickety porches, and dripping taps that put this home within financial reach. Thanks to the help of various hired and volunteer helpers in my life, it's now moving from the "needs repair" to "could use updating" column—in other words, it's safe, sound, and livable.

The most recent project includes replacement of the 80's era beige toilet in the the upstairs bathroom, which has had a tricky flush valve since we moved in. It was off limits for most of the summer, with a "NO!" handwritten in sharpie taped to its handle.

About a month ago, my dad pulled the beige toilet out and opened the box on our shiny new toilet from a big box store, only to discover the tank was cracked. Never fear! The friendly customer service team was only too happy to process our refund and reorder the toilet. It would be shipped to my home, they said—no need to make the hour's drive again.

The toilet was ordered September 5 and was supposed to take about a week to arrive, so I've put in a few calls to customer service since then. First,  I was told there was no update from the freight company contracted to deliver to Whidbey Island. Second, I was told the freight company had changed and the contract was now in much better hands. "I'm glad," I said. "We're a big family, and our upstairs bathroom now has a plastic bag and an inverted salad bowl on the floor where a toilet used to be."

On my third call, I was told that maybe my toilet was caught up in Hurricane Florence, 3000 miles away. This gave me pause. My inconvenience pales next to the tragedy of homes and human lives lost, the environmental devastation of manure lagoons overtopped, and the brutal, brief lives of the 3.4 million chickens and 5,500 pigs that drowned in North Carolina's flooded factory farms. 

I got a call yesterday at about 9 pm from a customer service representative based in Arizona, who promised that guaranteeing my delivery was now her personal commitment. I was grateful for the update, yet unattached to the outcome. I've decided that for now, one functioning bathroom is enough.

1 comment:

  1. Nothing better than Japanese toilets I hope someday my dream comes true.
    By the way, excellent short story ! As usual !


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