Friday, August 31, 2007

Husband and Wife Roles

Dan and I don't go out of our way to play your typical husband and wife roles, but we don't go out of our way to not play them either. For example, Dan typically takes out the trash. He also mows the lawn. I do a lot of the grocery shopping. Dan changes Will when we are out in public. Dan waters the plants outside. I do a lot of vacuuming. I stay home with Will 3 days of the work week. This just works for us.

But tonight we did experience a bit of a role reversal. Dan (and Will) ended up at Costco in California, calling me for advice about which laundry detergent to buy. I was glad he called because I was stuck in Virginia trying to figure out why the toilet in the half bathroom was not filling properly. Ultimately neither of us was very helpful over the phone, we had to figure out our problems on our own. Here is how my experience went...

When I got to our condo in Virginia, Tuesday, the first thing I noticed was that the toilet was running. As no one has been in our condo since May, who knows how long this has been going on. So, I set down my luggage and opened the tank. Sure enough, the flapper was warped. Later I went to Home Depot and got a new flapper which I installed today while the Air Conditioning Guy was servicing our poor air conditioner. (There's a lot going on for the condo this week. Hence, the reason I am here.) Later, I noticed that while the flapper stayed in place, the toilet would run for a long time. Instead of spraying to fill, it was kind of dribbling. At first when I asked Dan about this, he said, "it sounds like you have a pressure problem." Ok, that might be it, maybe I didn't turn the water back on fully after I installed the flapper.

So, I turned the water on all the way. Still no spraying to fill. I start poking around. I love taking things apart and putting them back together so that they work. I used to do it with my toys when I was a kid. I wiggled and prodded. And, of course, I found the sliding thing that holds the float assembly tightly to the toilet. Now remember, the water pressure was still all the way on. Let's just say that pressure was there. The damp bathroom ceiling proves that. And fortunately I knew where the shut off valve was. However, it takes a couple of turns to get it shut off. My damp head, shirt, pants, and face prove that.

After being sprayed with toilet water, I got smart and began testing with the water turned completely off. Ultimately I got the float assembly taken apart, then put back together, then finally adjusted so that it actually works.

As I sit here and hear the water shut off for the full toilet tank, I breathe a sigh of relief.

Now I must go on to next condo project. Perhaps I should call Dan to see if he remembers how to re-set the filter indicator on our now functioning air conditioner.

Dan: "If I was standing there, I could tell you which buttons to push."
Me: "I'm standing here, I'll figure it out eventually."

Fortunately this is a much drier task than the toilet one. :)

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