Last night was the first night this summer that it's actually felt hot - really hot, as in muggy and sticky and not really very comfortable. All night. I even slept with nothing to cover me other than my pyjamas (I'm notoriously susceptible to cold so this is a pretty big deal). And Tom? Well, he's a miserable pile of long fur sprawled over the parquet flooring in a desperate attempt to keep cool. (This, despite the fact that he's the coolest cat in the world, of course.)
We live in the centre (more or less) of a large city. We also live in a flat with no greenery around it, other than plane trees (damn them! hiss! curse their nose-itching pollen!) out front and a totally out-of-control wisteria bush crawling over the balcony, threatening to take us over (fuck that, take over the WORLD) by growing, like, 15 cm a DAY.
What I mean is that it is HOT here in the south of France and coolness is both much sought-after and hard to find. The one place that feels really good right now is the shower - cool water pouring off your shoulders, streaming down your back... Delicious!
So guess what broke this morning as I was finishing up my shower! Yup, you guessed it, the COLD TAP. I suppose I should be grateful that it broke as I was finishing - rinsing off shower gel with scalding hot water would have been... er... interesting? And yes, I know I could have used the sink, but it's not practical AT ALL.
"No problem!", you cry. "You go buy a new tap, install it and Bob's your uncle", as they say (except no one in my family WOULD say that as I don't have an uncle called Bob - don't have any uncles at all, in fact).
I'm no handywoman, but I did, indeed, go out and turn off the mains water, find some kind of pincer-y tool thing and remove the tap and go to my nearby (and possibly only) plumbing supplies shop. Felt right proud of myself, too.
Of course, they didn't have the right tap for me. OF COURSE they didn't. That would be too easy, right?
But they will be getting new ones tomorrow morning. And they had screw-on cap thingies to block the taps so I could turn the mains water back on and at least use OTHER taps. Wonderful! Perfect!
"One last thing," I stupidly ask the saleswoman. "How much will the new tap be?"
€149 excluding tax.
Yup, €149 excluding tax.
Now, I'm sure you can find cheaper ones in the DIY stores out of town. But I don't have a car and can't fucking get to them, can I? And Thursday is the damn national holiday so it will all be shut anyway.
I can't believe I might have to suck it up and pay €149 excluding tax for a TAP for fuck's sake.
And of course, it's so hot and muggy tonight the only thing that I can think of is standing under a nice, cool shower (OK, the only thing apart from Johnny Depp lying naked on my bed offering me a glass of Banyuls or perhaps some Pimm's n°1...).
This could be a looooooong night.