28 February 2008

One Small Screwdriver - The Defence of Our Realm

Things break a lot at our place. I'm not sure why, and I don't particularly want to hypothesize. One light bulb will blow, then another and another and another. The kettle will stop working, a DVD will become hopelessly stuck up inside our DVD player, and our bathroom ceiling will fall in. That sort of thing.

The last in the latest craze of co-ordinated self-destruction is our garage door. It's great when it works: very handy to press the remote control as you drive up the driveway and *hey presto* it opens and you drive in. Press the remote again and you're in and secure before you get out of the car. Very nice.

But the receiver inside the garage has not been receiving very well recently, so I've had to drive up the driveway, take the remote out of the car, walk up close to the garage door, press the remote so its little radio-waves-or-whatever go through the gap between the door and the wall to be received by the thing inside, and only then does the garage door open.

Then one day, Husband sort of accidentally shut the garage door down onto the pram (Chubbity Bubbity not included.) The door is supposed to stop when it hits something in the way, but it didn't. It kept on pushing down. The pram is okay, but the whole garage door mechanism had to be unlatched and switched off - things are broken in there and I don't understand enough about it to explain it to you.

At this point in time, we don't really have the money to look into fixing it right away.

So now, we don't have any way of keeping the garage door shut tightly except by pushing a small screwdriver through a hole in the wall attachment and through a hole in the tilting door. That's it, folks. We have triple-lock security screens, locks, bolts and deadbolts, but when it comes to our garage door, the only thing protecting us from being ransacked (as opposed to just LOOKING like we've been ransacked) is a small screwdriver pushed through holes in two bits of metal.

And now when I leave the house - once I've strapped Chubbity Bubbity and Sonny Ma-Jiminy in to their car seats, made sure they both have their sheets to suck, shoes on their feet, plus the stroller, change bag and/or lunch box in the car) and ensured I've locked everything else up and also brought everything I might need in my handbag - I have a new rigmarole in order to leave the house.

I reverse into the driveway, get out of the car, shut the garage door from the inside, put the screwdriver in place, walk out the front door, put the key in my pocket (because if I lost it, I wouldn't be able to 'break in' past the impenetrable security of the screwdriver), get back in the car and drive away. All this is done in reverse order upon coming home.

I ask you - would YOU go out often if you had to do that?