Gas man returned early yesterday afternoon. Had one or two sharp words with him regarding taking so long and not providing detail as to whereabouts. This taken most badly, said he had specified details to "the one asking all the questions", and he had gone to supplier directly, and had not a jot of lunch. Apologised profusely for this and offered him tea and biscuit. This duly accepted.
Had just about made tea and arranged some rather cheaper biscuits on plate when gas man emerged, said was terribly sorry but boiler altogether unserviceable, questioned had I "been meddling". Said no I had jolly well not been meddling, and thinking better of Mrs Payne's endeavours, promised we hadn't so much as looked at the thing. At this, Mrs Payne tottered in, and most pleased with herself exclaimed she had seen a nut awfully worn in boiler, and thinking herself quite the engineer had replaced it with a nut she "found on the garage floor", adding, "terribly resourceful, I thought!". Several moments passed with Mrs Payne waiting for praise, and receiving instead silence, queried,
"I say, what's with the cheap biscuits, Robert?".
Gas man most displeased by Mrs Payne's engineering, accused me of lying regards to meddling. Further had spent time getting this part, and now needed quite another as Mrs Payne had altogether sheered bolt thread. Asked how she had tightened nut so badly, explained could not find toolbox, so instead had used my nut cracker and had worked rather well. Added after some moments that thinking on it, we need a new nut cracker. Found item in kitchen draw in pieces. This explained by Mrs Payne as fearfully shoddy construction.
Thanked gas man for his patience and after quickly drinking his tea, and quite shunning the biscuits I had provided, showed him to door. Left me with instructions not to let anyone near boiler. This solemnly promised.
Had quite fearful row with Mrs Payne, and most annoyed that still had broken boiler. This declared as utter nonsense, and heading for boiler, Mrs Payne instructed,
"Get me the plunger!".