February 18, 2016
IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS THAT MAKE THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE
When Nick came back to France one week ahead of me it was so that he could varnish the new staircase without the risk of getting little paw prints in the varnish. It’s a hard enough job without the added stress of keeping cat and dog away from the stairs while the varnish dries.
Before he started the varnishing he decided to put right one of the little things about the house that drove us mad, almost daily.
At the bottom of the stairs there used to be a light switch. It was actually on the wall behind the old spiral staircase. This would switch on the light on the landing in order to see to get upstairs in the dark.
At the top of the stairs was another light switch. Unfortunately this did not turn off the landing light, but operated a light in the kitchen. To turn off the landing light, if we had turned it on, we had to go back downstairs then come back up again in the dark.
It’s almost as if someone had intended to have a two-way light system for the landing but didn’t quite finish the detail.
We managed for over a year by switching on the landing light from downstairs, going upstairs and switching on the bathroom light which would light up the landing a bit, going back downstairs to switch off the landing light, then coming back up again.
Another option was to switch on the kitchen light downstairs, which would light up the staircase in the sense that it cast shadows on the stairs so that we could just about make our way up, then switching off the kitchen light from the switch on the landing.
Bonkers or what?!
So with a lot of head scratching and rooting about behind the plasterboard, Nick managed to fix the lighting system. We can now turn the landing light on or off from the top or bottom of the stairs, and do the same with the kitchen light. All it took was a couple of hours’ work and an extra bit of wire.
Goodness knows how the other people put up with it for so many years. We only stood it for a year, or until it got higher up our list of priorities. Fixing it has made a great improvement to our quality of life. It’s such a little thing compared to other big jobs but it’s made a disproportionately large difference.
Oh, and Nick got the stairs varnished in a couple of days and they look beautiful, too.
more of the same DIY