Lately, I’ve been involved with various tradespeople — the plumber, the electrician and so on — following a number of domestic …er… difficulties.
Technology seems to have been ganging up on me, these past few months. Weird electrical faults that don’t repeat themselves when the electrician is on site.
And incidents with animals.
Don’t believe me?
The dog ate my homework?
Well, a mouse ate my dishwasher, for starters.
No, I kid you not. This is not a “Please, miss, the dog ate my homework” kind of fabrication, even though it may sound like one.
I live in the countryside.
There are mice here.
The mouse chewed a great big hole in the inlet pipe so it sprayed water all over the machine’s innards. In an attempt to maintain some green credibility (even though said dishwasher was 10 years old) I engaged a repairman to replace the inlet pipe. A week or so later, he did. Heroic plumber #1. Ran a successful rinse programme.
Sigh of relief from would-be green homeowner.
The dishwasher worked again… except that it didn’t.
It ran, but it didn’t heat the washing water or dry the dishes. Sigh of despair.
Heroic plumber #2
Another repairman requested by despairing homeowner, this time to replace the element.
Another week or so later, he came, new element under his arm.
He looked, he turned the dishwasher on its side to access the element, he frowned. Elements didn’t usually fail, he told me, straight-faced. More likely, the water spraying out from the holed inlet pipe had damaged the electronics. That would be expensive to repair. He was kind, and very sympathetic, but he was shaking his head. Another sigh from me, but deeper.
Oh and, by the way — bless him, he was trying not to laugh by then, I think — the mouse had also chewed holes in the sump which probably couldn’t be replaced in such an old machine. Better to cut my losses and replace the dishwasher?
Sigh turning to scream? And to cap it all, I’d have been handwashing dishes for about a month by the time a new dishwasher could be delivered and installed. (And I hate washing up.)
Not a total disaster, though, in spite of the washing up. Because I learned something about some of the repairmen who solve domestic problems for hair-tearing householders like me.
My plumber was one of the good guys. Not only because he didn’t laugh but because he didn’t charge me a penny for that second visit.
why can’t someone like that be a romantic hero?
What makes a hero heroic? Why not a bald plumber?
Romantic heroes are so often tycoons or heads of huge international conglomerates — the kind of enterprises that many of us hold responsible for a lot of the ills of our planet. But the billionaire tycoon is often presented as the ideal hero. Why?
Specifically, does a hero have to be rich?
Does he have to be powerful?
I’m wondering if it depends on the kind of romance we’re reading? Many, many contemporary romances published by Harlequin, for example, not only have billionaire heroes, but announce his presence proudly in the book title. Take The Billionaire’s [adjective] [noun] and fill in your own words, the absurder, the better. The Billionaire’s Ugly-Sister Odalisque, anyone?
And how many of the heroes in historical romances are rich, or nobles [ie powerful], or both? Lately, dukes seem to be proliferating and, again, announced in the book titles.
Full disclosure — yes, I’ve written quite a few titled heroes myself, I admit, though only one duke. So far.
Perhaps you have favourite heroes who are plumbers?
Or electricians? Or otherwise non-powerful good guys?
I think I may be reading the wrong kind of books.
So do please share your favourites.
I clearly need help here…
PS In case you were wondering, I do now have a new dishwasher. It works fine. There are no holes in it. There is, though, a largish hole in my bank account 😉