Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Canada Day, the 09 Edition

Yesterday morning, while checking my e-mail, there was a knock on the door. It was delivery man holding a box.
A slight turning revels the name "Victoria" along with "Louet"
I've been wanting a traveling wheel for quite a while and lately the time was (monetarily) right. So Victoria was duly ordered and anxiously awaited.
She comes with her own carrying case that converts to a backpack.
Everything fits happily into the case and there is enough room to stuff fiber and a kniddy knoddy too.
The set up was really quick and (so I've been told ) the take down is equally as quick. It is a little bit different from my old S10. It has scotch tension (which will take a little getting used to) and the bobbins are quite a bit smaller, but it is easy to treadle and doesn't take up much space.
Unfortunately, the day was slightly overshadowed by laundry.

Monday, while doing a load of laundry, there was a loud CLUNKTHUNK, and things stopped happening. Ever hopeful, I stopped the machine and started it again. Maybe it would be just a badly unbalanced load. Unfortunately, the same loud noise was heard and it was equally as disturbing.
Being handy with a screw driver, I undid the bottom panel to see if anything came loose.
And boy oh boy! Something really came loose!
See the two flat parts on the gray thing? Those are part of the concrete ring that acts as a stabilizing device on the front loading washing machines. They are suppose to be level with the floor. They are so not.
I felt this warranted further investigation and so I took the top off. And this is what I found.
See the coiled spring? The hook on the bottom of it is suppose to be attached to the plastic casing that surrounds the drum. Do you see that beige cylinder that has the cord running through it? If you visually follow the cord down to the plastic liner, you will see that there is a little tear in the plastic where there is sort of a hump. That is where the spring is suppose to be. Not good.
Seeing as the wash was in the middle of a load of towels, and there was no quick fix for the machine, I loaded it in to the wagon and dragged it all to the nearest laundry mat, which, thankfully, is only about a ten minute walk.
I was talking to the world famous Mamoo later the next day and she said that she could come and pick me up and we could go washing machine shopping together. So off we went.
And bought a new washing machine and dryer.

Ain't it pretty? It was the floor model so it was a good price. Or so it seemed. Unfortunately when we got it in the house (which meant moving a hutch and book case) got it all plugged in and ready to go, pressed "Power" and......nothing. I downloaded a repair guide (seeing as there wasn't an owners manual) and looked and looked to see if there was something that we missed and ...nope. Calling it a night, we went to bed so as to be able to tackle the problem in the morning. Thankfully the obnoxious noisy neighbours were, for once, quiet.

Morning comes and after coffee, Bill decides to take the top off thinking that maybe there was a wire that was jiggled loose in transit. And lo and behold, there are a whole bunch of loose wires. In fact every wire that is suppose to go into the Central Control Unit which is the, let's call it, BRAINS OF THE MACHINE! And where was the Central Control Unit? Back in Mexico I guess. It certainly wasn't in my brand new washing machine.

Ohhhhhh. We are not amused.

What made the day even better was that one of my boys came down with the flu. And you with kids know that kids with flu mean , well, lets just call it laundry. I wasn't letting THAT sit around until tomorrow, or heaven knows when this whole mess get straightened up. Being Canada Day, everything is closed today. Except for the laundry mat. So guess where I spent a quiet hour today.

Oh oh oh! I almost forgot the icing! Yesterday, the phone company sent someone to fix the neighbours phone line. There was something wrong with the voltage between the house and the pole so the whole line needed to be replaced. Fine. We had been having sporadic problems over the past couple of weeks and I could live without the phone for an hour or so. The fellow came and checked our lines after he had done the "repair" and everything seemed fine.
Fast forward about 6 hours and suddenly the phones don't work. There is a hum. The neighbours phones are fine, so I use it to call the company and the earliest that they can get someone to come look at the line is Thursday. Holiday today, don't you know.

13 (or so) years ago, when the phone company was N.B. Tel, we had someone come and install a second line on a Sunday. Because there was always someone on call. Apparently Alliant, or Bell Alliant as they are now called, doesn't feel the same way about customer service.

Welcome to the new New World Economy. Where you pay top dollar for crappy service and a premium price for incomplete products.

Happy Canada Day!


Dani said...

Oh Jackie, that sucks! Lets hope tomorrow is better

mira's papa said...

Aliant talk a good line when it comes to service, but they are crap compared to the way it was when it was a small provincial phone utility. And the washing machine, that's the most outrageous thing I've ever seen in a new product. Like shipping a car without any electrical system. Total BS. There had better not be any grief getting that sorted out.

Julia said...

I feel so terrible about the whole thing. I was going to take you to where I thought was the best place to buy a washer and dryer but your dad thought that I could get a better price elsewhere, so I went with his suggestion. I hope that all this is sorted out tomorrow.

I got another calf after work this evening, so it has been a long day for me too.


tanita davis said...

What IS it with Canada and broken washers!? And sickness, too. Ugh. Your washer is GORGEOUS, and I am seriously envious (she who finally snapped and shoved a comforter into a teeeeensy tiny UK washer because she just couldn't see sending it out to a dry cleaner like everyone else does -- it's synthetic. It CAN be washed!). Or, I was. Here's hoping the humans can get their brains together so that the machine can get its brains.


Christine said...


I just broke our lawn mower yesterday. But at least one can live without a lawn mower.

Besides, I can always (and did) call Uncle Al to borrow his.

And speaking of crappy service from Bell. Once, a two years ago, either our line card died or they completely disconnected our line card when they were supposed to be disconnecting someone else's. It took one full week (From Friday until Thursday) for them to send someone to fix our phoneline. Absolutely ridiculous... and I had to call and complain to get a one week credit off of our phone bill. That still makes me angry.

mira's papa said...

@ Christine
When I was living in Ontario, from 86 to 91, I found Bell to be terrible for service. Every experience was as bad as you cite. When I moved back to Fredericton and the utility was NB Tel (before they sold out to Aliant, then Aliant was consumed by Bell), I moved into an apartment, and walked to the phone store where they activated my service immediately. It was working when I went home. They installed a second phone line for internet on a Sunday, just a couple of hours after I called in the request. And they fixed my noisy phone in one apartment immediately after I called to tell them it was bad - okay, it was pretty obvious that I was having to yell over the noise for the person to hear me, but they responded quickly.

I could tell more horror stories about Aliant, but I'll leave it at that. These big corporations don't give a shit about service. They want to extract as much from you for the minimum level of service. I got a follow-up call from some survey company a couple of weeks ago asking about how Aliant had handled our last service request. I told the woman that I wasn't going to answer her survey, that Aliant were predators, their service sucked, and she could tell them the only reason I wasn't with Rogers is that they are a worse criminal organization. She didn't know what to say. I told her that the first time some competition enters the area, I'm gone. They haven't called back. I had another call from an Aliant rep about the type of service we have and "do we want to change plans" and I gave him a lot of grief (all the while saying 'I know it's not your fault but'). He was pretty good and didn't lose his cool, but I basically filled him in on some telecom secrets, like the fact that when you get the caller ID feature, they just change one bit in a database on the DMS switch and then bill you forever for something that costs nothing, and the price is now double what it was when I got the feature, though they have had to do nothing. Ditto unlisted numbers. He got an education. Again, he didn't have an answer, because he talks to people who know nothing about how the system works, and they don't prepare them. I pointed out how they charge for crap that costs bugger all to provide. It's abusive.

Since we just had a service guy here today, I can't wait to get the next call from the survey company.

Valerie said...

Oy!! Why do the washing machines always die in the middle of a load of towels. Never with a load of lacy delicates!!

What a horrible time for you!

Am glad to see that you have a new, new washing machine in the latest post! Hope all is smooth sailing from here on!

mira's papa said...

They die with towels in them because that's about as heavy a load as you can put in them, and if it's a mechanical failure, it's likely to be caused by the strain of the heavier load. Kind of makes sense when you think about it. The lacy delicates are too light to hold much water, so place very little strain on the mechanisms.