Well, it’s all go here. What, with four rooms prepped and painted in five days, a kitchen bought and installed, a garage demolished and removed, footings dug for a new workshop/studio, trees cut down… need I go on?
Probably not, but I will. The title here is Kitchen Sink Drama, because, well … we have had what you could call a bit of a kitchen sink drama. A drama which involves Birmingham, South Wales, broken bones, snowstorms, rats in a bedroom- and of course, a kitchen sink. You couldn’t make it up.
I decided to buy my kitchen from Ikea, simply because I loved their Domsjo double bowl sink.
Cabinets in place for the Domsjo
I measured, planned, ummed and aahed, measured and planned some more, trotted round Ikea a few times, then ordered it. Several items were out of stock, several items not as requested, several items missing and several items deliberately put on wrongly by staff simply because my sink being out of stock (as well as other bits and bobs) meant my order would be under £2000.00 and therefore wouldn’t qualify for the discount. I couldn’t, of course, do anything so simple as pay for and order the sink (and other out-of-stock bits).
The kitchen couldn’t be put into position without the sink, the flooring (throughout the whole ground floor) couldn’t be fitted without the kitchen, and the furniture couldn’t be taken out of storage till the flooring was installed… it felt a bit like the old woman who swallowed a fly. It could go on forever.
Domsjo sinks aren’t available to buy over the internet. So I checked the stock levels of the Domsjo sink in all the Ikeas in the country. They had some in both their London stores, and a few in Bristol. They had one in Birmingham. That was the sink situation in the whole country. It wasn’t worth driving to Birmingham with only one sink in stock; it would only take one other person to get there before me. I flirted with the idea of staying overnight with my student daughter in London for the purpose of sink-purchasing, but the idea didn’t inspire me. She is very untidy and keeps pet rats in her bedroom. Very nice rats, very friendly rats, but probably quite smelly. Not sure I could cope.
Ebay had a Domsjo double bowl sink – still in its box, in an outhouse in a South Wales village. Mr 1st Unique and I reckoned we could get there and back in a day. The measurements the sink-owner gave me worried me a bit as they were not the same as mine. And the stock number was different. Dare we risk it? We reckoned we had no option… so we planned our journey, messaged back and forth on ebay, and just before we went I checked Ikea’s website. Birmingham had nine of the damn things in stock!!! What’s more, we had to drive straight past it to get to South Wales.
We drove as far as Birmingham, straight into a blanket of snow and slow traffic. We decided to stop off and check the Birmingham sink situation for ourselves. After all, the website could well be wrong. Or there could be a rush on Domsjo sinks.
We got it. And a nice meal. And a lovely walk round (if you’ve ever been to Ikea, you’ll know exactly what I mean). I phoned the Welsh sink-owner on Ikea carpark with the Brummie sink in our boot. He was very nice about it.
We got the sink home, and then the real problems started. It wasn’t meant to go in a corner situation, like I’d planned. It was a conundrum that took George a couple of days to sort out. Then the plumber fell off a ladder at another job and broke two bones in his foot. I don’t mean to be unsympathetic (the poor guy must be in pain), but just as I get a sink I lose a plumber.
I found another though, after about twenty phone calls and a visit from one plumber who seemed confused by the job, and couldn’t give me any idea of cost. He was followed by the only plumber who’d had the decency to reply to my message. What a great guy. SuperPlumber! Nothing was too much trouble, he was quick, came back when needed, and sorted the pipework out.
The sink story isn’t over yet. The sink is in place, but not yet plumbed. SuperPlumber can’t get back till Monday, but I’m sure he’ll get my Domsjo plumbed in…
Watch this space!