September 12, 2011

The Plumber

Now that we’re talking design flaws anyway (the 100,000 bank note), here’s another issue I have. It’s with the plumbers in town.

When I just moved here, it happened quite frequently that the sink would get clogged (Well, it still does). You fix that problem with a plunger for a while, you unscrew and clean that silver colored swan-neck thing under the sink a couple of times, then you resort to harsher measure by buying some really vicious liquid from the supermarket that will bite its way through any obstacle (including your pipes, of course), and finally you call in the plumber.
Just some pictures I took over the weekend (and not related to this post): A bride in a convertible, somewhere in the mountains near Saida (Sidon)

 Plumber comes in and looks at it. “No problem,” he says, and he leaves again, because he needs to get the material to fix the problem. If you’re lucky, he comes back the same day.

And then, invariable, they replace this smooth metal swan-neck with a flimsy plastic harmonica-like contraption. The first time I saw it, I thought it quite odd. If there’s anything that will help clog your drain any faster, it’s a plastic, bendable, harmonica tube; there’s innumerable little barriers behind with dirt and grease can stick. But hey, he’s the plumber, and I’m the housewife here.

I did question the design, but the answer was, “they do not make those metal swan-necks anymore.” I thought that quite odd. Why would they trade a perfectly workable design for something inferior? All I could think of was that maybe it was a cost issue. Plastic is cheaper than metal.

Just some pictures I took over the weekend (and not related to this post): Some road my GPS suggested I should take near Saida (Sidon)

But then when I’d go to Holland, I’d see this shiny metal swan-neck under everyone’s sink, not the flimsy plastic harmonica hose. And Dutch are cheap. If they can get something cheaper for the same purpose, they will.

Now I have l become wiser since. They DO sell the real deal in Lebanon. But the plumber would need to measure, and saw, and it takes a lot more work because here they do not work with standard measurements, and in every house the sink is at a different height and distance from the drain pipe. Thus, it takes some puzzling and thinking. That is obviously something that is not required of plumbers.

And since the plumber is not going to explain this to me, a “they do not make those anymore” would be an answer that apparently many people accept.

Now this morning, I called in the plumber because I want an extra water tab on my balcony. This would require from the plumber that he somehow gets that water from the main line, and directs that to this particular balcony. “No problem, sidna, I’ll do this and this and this,” and he waves a little with his hands.

Just some pictures I took over the weekend (and not related to this post): The old Port in Sour.

But I have become wiser, so, no, please explain ‘this’ and ‘this’ and ‘this’.
How on earth do you get it from there to here? I ask, as I point at the main line.

“With a pipe.”
“What kind of a pipe?”
“A white pipe.”
“Never heard of white metal.”
“No, it’s plastic.”
“Yes, everyone uses it these days. They don’t make the metal pipes anymore.”
“No, no plastic.”
“But it has metal inside it!”
“Is it bendable?”
“You’re trying to use a plastic hose?”
“Yes. No. Uh, everyone uses it.”

Hahaha, sorry dude, but ehhh, no, I don’t think so. I don’t care what everyone uses, I want a decent looking pipe on this balcony, not some bendable shit that is constructed in this Arabacho style.

Just some pictures I took over the weekend (and not related to this post): A bunch of water pipes waiting for customers in the Saida Mall in (Yes, you guessed that right) Saida.

I want metal, I want it straight. I want it done properly. You can install that plastic plumbing stuff in your own house. Not in mine.

Boy, did his face drop! He thought he was going to get rid of me with some plastic hose contraption, and the woman wants a serious metal pipe! That involves a good full day of work, with welding (which he may not know) and measuring, and sawing. You should see his face!!! Priceless.

But in the end I got what I wanted. A straight, metal pipe.

Just some pictures I took over the weekend (and not related to this post): A girl with an attitude on the streets of Beirut. (H, she just cut her hair!!!! )


Anonymous said...

I drive them crazier, I pick all the best parts after quick research by asking relatives (no need for google in lebanon, everyone knows everything). After I get the parts I want, I ask them how much would you charge to put this together??

Anonymous said...

hair looks nice, tell that to H. Y.

Kym said...

We also deal with wonderful little quirks like that here in Turkey :-) Have looked for the 'follow' button on your blog but cant find??

Sietske said...

@Anonymous; That's a smart one, hadn't hought about that one yet. Not a bad thought.
@Y: ja, zal het haar vertellen. Waarom zit je niet meer op FB?
@Kym; Ti be honest, I tried to install a 'like' button, but the instructions were impossible to follow, so I gave up. If someone has simple instructions for the 'old' Blogger template, I'm game.

Life with Subtitles said...

@Kym if you want RSS then you can use subscribe to this link (use a feed reader like Google Reader).

@Sietske it wouldn't hurt to have your rss linked somewhere on your blog, and maybe an email subscription option (feedburner perhaps?). Otherwise, I'm a geek at your service if you need help with blogger :)

Cheers !

Anonymous said...

Facebook? Ik ben best vaak op Facebook, ik heb al 5 vrienden. Sommigen heb ik in geen 30 jaar gesproken trouwens, en anderen wens ik verder niet meer te spreken. Maar verder wel handig, Facebook. Y.

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Great website, looks very clean and organized. Keep up the good work! antibacterial

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find sydney plumber said...

maybe the plumber you've got wants an easy job, there are plumbers who are reliable and answers politely to all the questions a customer may ask, and will ask for approval first before doing plumbing things in your house.

Netai Biswas said...

Are you sure this is grey PEX, or could it be PBP tubing? For the shower head, either will work but many like the rigidity of copper pipe. Regarding the drain, I'm sure you have ABS black drain lines, so if the new drain doesn't match up exactly, it is an easy fix to cut it out and replace, if necessary.

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