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So, at 8:00 this morning, the bell rang. It was Blum Sanitärteknik, the plumbers who could finally fix our kitchen leak.

Let me tell you about the kitchen so far.

When Larry and Curly (neither were skilled enough to be Moe) came to do the kitchen “montage” which I translated to mean installation, but here seemed to mean “take 3 times longer than expected to put the kitchen together while complaining the whole time and royally fucking up the plumbing”. Yeah, hours of “scheisse” and “we are just wood workers” but they seemed to have no problem spending three hours on the plumbing before saying “you must call specialist” and leaving (and saying one last “we just do the wood work, not the water or electricity” on the way out).

Yeah, we only do wood work.

Anyway, they left with a small nagging leak, one that I thought with a little bit of mental energy and the right parts, I could fix it. I mean, if Larry and Curly could get it 95%, I can take the last 5% myself.

That was last Friday.

Monday, I made a quick run to the Baumarkt (hardware store) for some more parts. Got everything I needed to put a new connector block together (3/8″ cold water in, with two 3/8″ out for the cold and hot water feeds and a 3/4″ for the dishwasher and lots of teflon tape). I brought the pieces home, realized I missed a part, went back, put the doohickey together, connected it to the pipes.

The drip was now a gush. Guess you can just call me Moe.

I then try to remove the doohickey I made and put back in Larry and Curly’s doohickey, but I guess with all of the teflon tape, it was in good and tight. At this point, I surrendered and started calling for plumbers.

Under Sanitär (plumbing), we found a listing for one company. 24 hour service for “rohrrenigung” which, when translated through, meant “plumbing”. I called and they said they would be there between 9 and 10am on Tuesday.

9am Tuesday. Door bell rings. I let in the guy. He has a big router machine with him. I say, no not the drain, the pipes. He points to his shirt which says “rohrrenigung”. I say, yes, plumbing. He says no – only drains. I show him the ad in the yellow pages. He says it is a mistake.

10am, Tuesday. No water. Can’t get the original drippy doohickey back on. I surrender and call another company, Blum. Luckily, he spoke English and told me that they would have someone to re-install the pipes on Wednesday at 8:00.

Wednesday. 8:05, the door rings, and I let in the installer. He opens the under-sink cabinet. I swear, he turned as white as a ghost when he saw the condition of the water connections.

“Amateur” he said, “Very bad. maybe has broken the water heater because pressure is off.” 5 minutes later, he was off to get parts.

8:45, he returns with a big box of what I assume are parts. Instead, it is a new faucet.

In pantomime, simple German and broken English, he shows me on this new faucet how there are three output pipes and two input pipes, exactly what is needed for this kitchen. Then he shows me how the standard Ikea setup only had two pipes. He shows me the documentation that says in English “for small water heaters”. He points to the diagram that looks like a snapshot of what our kitchen should look like.

Then he tells us that the faucet is more expensive than what we have, so we can not install it and find something with the same design and call them for another appointment, or just use that one. We decided to just take the plunge and get the faucet he brought installed. He started the install a little after 9am. By 9:30, it was complete, and hooked up properly. No leaks, no gaps, and no drips.

Well, except for me. Moe the Drip.

Posted in Cologne Life.