Wednesday, 17 October 2012


This is the continuing saga about running a boarding cattery in a Spanish village recently.   As soon as husband went to the UK chasing a bit of work to keep our heads above water, we had a blocked sink.  I thought I had solved the overflowing sink problem with some liquid bought from the supermarket online.  But I was wrong.  When I brought a plumber he said he couldn't fix it by himself.  He wanted to bring a lorry with a grinding machine, costing a minimum of 150 Euros on top of his 60 Euros fee....what a con it seemed.  Maybe, on reflection, it would have been the best option.

I had emptied the septic tank five weeks earlier and since that time all the waste water came back into the kitchen, overflowing onto and inside the kitchen units, and the floor.  It wasn’t possible to use the washing machine or dishwasher as the waste water would return inside the machine in a grey, muddy, cloudy mess.  It was impossible to use the sink as the water came back up and overflowed.  Running a cattery was difficult with all the cat bowls to wash and disinfect.  Dirty plates were everywhere....My son Leo was able to wash some in the bathroom, but I struggled to reach the bathroom as the wheelchair didn’t fit through the door and I could only manage a few steps with crutches.  These things always happened when my husband had to work away from home.   Luckily there was a tap in the garden next to the cattery, but only with cold water.

The smell in the kitchen was atrocious with the dirty waste water and also the plumber used four bottles of "muy peligroso" (very dangerous) stuff in order to clear the drainpipes.  Unfortunately to no avail.

The next step was to call the septic tank people back and ask them to tackle it from that end.  The blockage was so strong it broke their power hose, so they had to leave and get their hose repaired.  Eventually, some days later, they blasted the blockage with a grinding machine, which backfired all over them....ugh....and the cost was another 90 Euros which I could have spent on something better, e.g. the mortgage.  The lady in charge had broken her arm, so we made a matching pair.

There was great relief that the problem was solved.  It was then a matter of cleaning up.  As I was barely able to hobble, the only way to do that was to sit on the typist chair, wheeling about the kitchen with wet wipes and disinfectant, washing the surfaces down from the filthy water.   The wheelchair didn’t fit inside the kitchen door.

Only problem was, I wasn’t used to moving about very much and I felt dizzy, probably from the fumes of the chemicals that were coming back up inside the dishwasher.  I went to bed the following nights with bad dehydration and if I sat up, I got so dizzy I thought I would collapse.

I had no choice but to lay down and drank water, sugar, bicarbonate and alcohol.  After a while, I felt stronger and almost normal. 

I hope this gives you a laugh. 

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