November 22, 2007

Thanks A Lot

Okay, I guess I have to provide a little context for this one.

My mum just had to have an operation and is in hospital for a few days – and since those days happened to fall over Emerson's Thanksgiving break, I'm in Edinburgh 'til Monday. (She's doing fine.)

Since I was going to be at home, she arranged to have a satellite TV engineer stop by so that the enormous, million-inch flatscreen TV she bought a year ago can finally start actually receiving TV signals.

You may now consider the context section of this post concluded.

About ten o' clock this morning the phone rang. While normally I'd be peeved at having to wake up that early after my first night of jetlag, I was, in fact, already awake, thanks to the renovations being done in the flat upstairs. Apparently these require obnoxiously loud drilling directly above my bedroom, starting around eight-thirty.

Okay, so I guess this is really the end of the context section.

Anyway, the phone rang, and it was the Sky engineer saying that he couldn't find a parking space. Parking in central Edinburgh requires a murderous singularity of purpose at the best of times, so I was neither shocked nor sympathetic, but as it happened a space opened up right in front of the flat as I was on the phone with him, and I told him as much.

A few minutes later the phone rang again. This time it was the Sky customer service department – apparently unaware of their purview – calling to say that the engineer couldn't find a space and so wouldn't be able to install anything today. Now, notwithstanding the fact that (given my previous remarks on parking in central Edinburgh) this effectively put the kibosh on us ever getting Sky installed, the empty space was still out front and I pointed this out. With an impatient sigh, the man put me on hold while he conferenced with the engineer.

After a minute or so: "Okay, fine, he'll drive back around the block, but you have to go stand in the space so nobody else takes it." (I swear I am not making this up.)

I dutifully went downstairs, and a minute or so later the engineer pulled up, shaking his head at me as he rolled down his side window.

"Can you not get in there?" I asked.

"Well, mebby," he said. "But I'll no' get ma ladders off the roof."

"You could take them off first and then pull into the space," I helpfully suggested (there's plenty of room to double-park during the day).

He ignored that completely and proceeded to attempt the most half-assed parking job I have ever seen, eventually stopping with the van's nose still hanging out into the centre of the street. "Never mind, I'll come have a look at what needs doin', first," he said, getting out.

I took him upstairs and showed him the situation. He then asked to see the back garden, where the dish would be going, so I took him outside. He had a thoughtful wander around for about thirty seconds, looking from the wall to the sky and back again, rubbing his chin calculatorily.

"We've got a wee problem," he said, walking back over to me.

"I'm shocked," I said. (Okay, fine, I only thought that.)

"See, this tree's in the way, we'll no' get a line of sight. The dish'll need to go on your chimney, so you'll have to rebook for a Special Heights Team to come out."

("Special Heights Team"?! Are they midgets or something?)

"I see," I said, and sent the roguish scamp on his way with an affectionate tousle of his hair.

So, in summary, Sky is a great option for residents in central Edinburgh, unless you live in a tenement with parking problems and trees nearby.

Happy freakin' Thanksgiving.

1 comment:

Adrienne said...

Happy Tanksgiving ya wee lad.

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