Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Milky Tea: The fuel of English workmen

Mr K-E reminded me (twice) that I should offer the carpet fitters tea and biscuits when they turned up. Yes, I know; I said, do you think I just got off the plane yesterday? In fact we had to buy a pack of chocolate hobnobs especially, as we don't normally have any biscuits in the house.

As it turns out, only one bloke turned up and he took about three hours to fit the carpet. Usually, carpet fitters work at the speed of light but our hallway stair is all wonky; each step is different and it's all a bit of a nightmare. He also had to remove the old carpet and put the underlay down; so three hours is quite quick really. The fitter said the stair had "character", but I don't think he meant it in a nice way, ha ha ha.

As I am a well-trained English wife nowadays, I offered him tea and bikkies as soon as he arrived and then made him two more cups without even being asked. If a workman has to ask you for tea, you have committed a bit of a social faux pas. A few years ago, Mr K-E was at home while we had a new kitchen fitted and he was just pottering around the flat, fiddling with the computer etc while the kitchen fitter did his work. Mr K-E doesn't drink hot drinks during the day, so he neglected his tea making duties until finally the kitchen fitter (in desperation) said, "Is the kettle working?"* hint* hint*.

The carpet fitter didn't eat the biscuits, by the way. So I'll have to eat them instead. :)

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