A few mornings ago Shannon and I were headed out the door to church when we spotted a little puddle sneaking out from underneath our kitchen stove. No big deal, right? I’m messy and it isn’t a rare occurrence that I leave a puddle in my wake. However, upon further investigation we discovered that the puddle was springing from a wet pipe underneath our sink.
While getting some plumbing work done in the States might not be a big deal, in a cross-cultural situation and particularly our cross cultural situation-where trade workers are notorious for heavy drinking, atrocious reliability and commonly referred to as “terrorists”-plumbing is scary. I really did not want to call a plumber, so I didn’t. I had our tutor do it and schedule for the plumbers to come when she would be teaching us the next morning. After our tutor called and made the appointment she made it very clear that we would be calling for two weeks everyday before they actually showed up. When they arrived just before her the next morning we seriously enjoyed her look of surprise.
While these plumbers were rough around the edges and looked like they had just worked a full shift in a coal mine, I must say, our experience with them was great. They were cheap, helpful, efficient, and even a little bit fun. Beside the fact that they called us Chinese and asked me to pay them in Vodka, they not only fixed the leaky pipe beneath our sink but also managed to place a filter underneath our sink which killed a putrid biological stench that had haunted our bathroom ever since we arrived.
All in all, we like Ukrainian plumbers now. I hope we have as good as an experience with painters who we will be calling up soon!
On an entirely different note…….here is a photo of my favorite bank in Ukraine. Apparently economic times have been especially tough on this bank.