Thursday, September 20, 2007

Mr. Mbale

Hi friends. Steph here. I want to tell you about Mr. Mbale. Mr. Mbale is our own personal plumber. I say that because we have pretty much been keeping him fully employed over the last 2 weeks. I just get a kick out of the way things work over here. The first problem was evident when we first arrived, a leaky toilet in the Master bathroom. We thought we had fixed the problem but then one day I came in to find the bathroom flooded. (We've now flooded two bathrooms and the laundry room). So, when these things happen we call Mr. Mbale. Usually he comes and assesses the problem, tells me the part that he needs to fix it, tells me how much the part costs, I give him the money, and then leaves to go get the part. He has no vehicle so sometimes he doesn't come back with the part until the next day. Then I call our landlord and tell her how much I have paid Mr. Mbale for the day and she trys to make it over to pay me back. He has completely taken apart our toilets and unfortunately they still don't work. I'm not sure what to think about his plumbing abilities. (He has worked on every piece of plumbing except for the kitchen sink). Today it was getting quite comical. I said, "Mr. Mbale, so good to see you again today. I'm getting quite used to having you around." He chuckled and said, "Please Madam." I love how he calls me Madam. I feel so special when he calls me Madam. I'm thinking of having my kids start calling me Madam. He then explained the problem in his broken English most of which I can't understand. He told me how much he needed and I went out to the kitchen to get the money and write a receipt for him to sign. As he was signing I asked him if he worked for a company or by himself. He said that he works for himself. He then asked if I could hire him to work for ACTION. I was taken a back. I told him that I wasn't in charge. He wanted to be a full-time plumber for ACTION. Isn't that so sweet? He told me that if we don't need plumbing he could do other work for us. I told him that if he impressed me with his work that I would recommend him. He responded with, "Please, please Madam." We'll see what happens tomorrow. I'm starting to be thankful for multiple toilets and sinks which I at first thought were in excess, because maybe there will be at least one working. The girls are getting used to asking which toilet and sink they are allowed to use. Thanks for allowing me to share this comedy with you. Steve joked that maybe he purposely makes something leak each time he leaves so that we will have to call him again. I'm hoping that's not true, but when people are desperate and unemployed they may resort to doing things like that. And, he calls me "Madam" so I'm going to think the best of him.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeah, thats a trick all of us 'tradesmen' use. We come to fix one thing and while your not looking we mess with something esle. Job security you know;)
Not really, I'm sure Mr. Mbale is doing the best he can with what he's got to work with.
Talk to you guys later, and we love reading your blog everyday so keep it up.