Monday, April 9, 2012
My Lithuanian Brother
Friday was one of those days, but I got smart--I set up TWO appointments so that I could make full use of my downtime. Heck, if I'm not getting paid, I might as well clean house and play Words With Friends while I play the waiting game.
And a game it is.
Not two hours into my window for the washing machine repair guy, I get a phone call from the dispatcher telling me he is going to be 2 hours late. Really?! At 10 a.m. we know this already? Criminy. We weren't starting off very well.
Surprisingly, the gas company came relatively early in the day, which was nice. He had to do a swift check of the meter and the connections into the house and off he went. Well......he was going to......and then we starting chatting. It was a lovely visit with the Nicor guy--we shared Weirdville (he lives here too) and pond stories. That killed a half hour in my 8 hour day of waiting.
Mid-afternoon, appliance repair guy shows up and I was all miffy. I do not appreciate waiting outside "the window" and I was a wee bit crabby upon seeing him arrive. I know it isn't his fault, but, dang, do they think people have nothing to do all day but wait for them to show up? There should be a rule against this sort of stuff. Or I should be able to reclaim all this lost time on my death bed.
Anywho, an older gentleman with a thick accent comes bustin' in the door--full of "I'm sorry's" and please-don't-kill-mes. So I didn't. I took one look at his computer screen that he used to log in the time he arrived and I realized that those fools at the home office just double book the poor technician. Why do they do that? I mean, I was so crabby by the idea that he was 2 hours late, it just put him in a bad spot to begin with. Then I was nice to him--I felt his pain.
So, we chatted a bit (notice a theme here?) and he looks at me and says "Where are you from?"
I thought it odd, but I told him that I was "Polish and Lithuanian."
His face lit up and the next thing I know, he's asking me in Lithuanian if I speak the language. I don't, but I just knew from his face that was what he was asking.
"Labas," I say my only legit Lithuanian word I know, "that's it."
But he's pleased as punch with that and gives me a giant bear hug and a kiss on the cheek like we are long lost relatives. Oh, that guy was so darn excited--you would have thought I was the queen of Lithuania. If there was one.
So, now my best Lithuanian friend in the whole entire world replaces not one, but TWO locks on the dryer, hands me an extra lock AND gives me the part number and tells me how to replace them in the future. He jerry-rigs the washer where the water was splashing over the sides (due to poor design) and stops the darn thing from dripping. And the whole entire time that he's doing all this, he's telling me all about how he came to America and how his daughter stayed home, but now she's here and has a great job and he's got a granddaughter and his wife watches her and.....and.....
Oh, man, it was hilarious.
So, I've got me a fixed washer and dryer AND a Lithuanian connection for future repairs.
I tell Joe all of this and he just shakes his head. "And that is why I have YOU stay home," he says.