Helaine woke me up around 7:15 AM, two hours after I went to sleep. It only took one look to know, this was not a pleasure trip to the bedroom.
“No hot water,” she said. “Didn’t you hear the heater cycling all night?”
Using methods similar to those Tonto deployed in “The Lone Ranger,” Helaine has hearing and (now revealed) tactile sensory powers far beyond those of mortal men. The water heater is in the basement. Our bedroom is on the second floor, but it’s above the garage which in turn is built over a concrete slab – not the basement! How did she know?
I got out of bed and walked downstairs. My expertise in this sort of thing is limited, but I understand it’s my duty (as laid out in the ketubah¹) to make like I know what’s going on.
Our heating system is a complex ‘hydroair’ system, powered by oil. The hot water is heated by the furnace which also heats the house. It is virtually impossible to run out of hot water!
The thermometer on the side of the hot water reservoir was pinned on 90° – the lowest it registers. The water was certainly cooler. The furnace was quiet.
I checked the oil tank. We had plenty.
Thirty seconds of looking and I already knew this was way beyond me. I picked up the phone to call my oil man. If you’ve read the blog for any length of time, you seen comments from Woody. He’s my friend and my oil man.
Ring, ring, nothing. I hung up and dialed again. Ring, nothing. Uh oh. Ring, ring, ring, nothing. Even during the height of the summer, I knew they’d be there early. This was a bad sign.
I opened my mail program and started to compose a note to Woody.
I’m emailing because your office phone rings once or twice and stops! We have no hot water. Help!
We have oil. The temp in the water tank is as low as it gets. I have no idea beyond that.
Can someone come and help. xxx-xxxx.
I quickly realized, Woody might not be there. He’s bought a home in Santa Fe, NM, which he visits from time-to-time. We needed hot water now… or at least soon.
The oil company office is only a few minutes from here. I had no choice but to drive over and get the process started.
I sleep in pajamas, but they’re not really traditional pajamas. They’re the 21st century equivalent of sweatpants and a t-shirt. I threw on a hat and sneakers, kept my pajamas on, and drove away.
Helaine said, “I smell a blog entry.” Really?
It was only 7:30AM, but the oil company’s office was buzzing. Winston the dog was attacking the office workers, jumping at least five feet off the floor as if he was on a trampoline. Service technicians were getting their trucks ready. Everyone there – living in homes with heated water – seemed happy.
“Your phones aren’t working,” I said as I walked in.
“We know. Was that you who tried calling?”
By the time I drove home, Woody had replied to my email… and obviously had made contact with the mother ship.
anyhow, sorry about the phones. they’re semi-operational right now. i have our VOIP provider meeting me there first thing. there will be no bluffing –
an ass kicking is on the agenda. hope your facial problem is better.
The technician arrived a few minutes later and quickly found a clogged nozzle. He replaced it and our filter. We have hot water again.
In retrospect, I can’t believe I drove away to see people while wearing my PJs. I’m starting to get very Britneyesque! Thank heavens I don’t attract paparazzi.
¹ – A ketubah is a Jewish prenuptial agreement or marriage contract and is an integral part of a traditional Jewish marriage. Ours (as most others) is an ornately printed certificate, mainly in Hebrew – a language neither of us reads nor understands. Over time, both of us have ‘quoted’ the ketubah to try and justify ridiculous things we’ve done or want.