'A sense of humour lends you poise, it gives you balance and it helps you to bend without breaking'

(HH Pujya Gurudev Swami Chinmayananda)

Menolectrical [men-oh-leck-trick-ul]; the condition of lighting up the world

What's the buzz?  Weeelllll.  Remember that business a wee while back?

Don't panic, I'm sitting here typing at you so nothing damaged!  But it was a close one.  It goes something like this.

There I was after my shower a few days ago, still in towels, remembering I had not 'offed' the geyser switch - the switch I had mentioned previously was inclined to get a tad warm to the touch at times. 

Hands were dry.  I promise.  Feet not so much.

Whatever little springy technology resided within said switch decided to cease springing.  The whole thing bulged out from its seating and as I saw the spark and glow happening in the innards of the thing there was a singing and a tingling within my own innards.

A girl could get used to the buzz.

Finally I had enough evidence to form a case for urgent action to be taken by administration.  This time there was no intermittent hit and miss with nothing visible as proof.  Here was a woman who had been fired up with electricity and the only way to switch her off was to attend to the matter.  Two days later…

The point was, apparently, that it didn't matter if the geyser was left on for a couple of days - at least I wasn't faced with cold showers.  Were the other switches operational?  "I don't know sir, I have no desire to experiment.  The refrigerator is still running, so am going to have to answer 'yes' on the basis of that particular unit continuing to have buzzing in Its innards."

Late on the third day, a day that was darker than dawn due to the heavy monsoonal downpour, the sparky showed up.  He of few words, dour and quizzical expression, short of stature.  And of tools.

We could barely see each other, yet onto the chair he got (the unit being above shoulder height of both of us), and proceeded to unscrew the wall plaque containing the set of switches.  (Yesssss, he did remember to turn off power first!)  As he set about removing the offending switch socket and the wires attached to it, I realised he was going to try and do this whole job in the dark. Between his Engli and my Hinglish it was established he did not have a torch.

Good thing I did.  (Thanks Emm!) What is more, my father's training once again came to the fore and I stood as the off-sider, shedding light at all points required, holding trays beneath to catch filings and drillings, handing over equipments.  What really ought to have been little more than a five minute task turned into the best part of half an hour.  The replacement unit was a third again bigger than the original and the wall plate had to be filed at vigourously to enlarge the cavity.  Then there was the question of the screws.  Sigh.  I did initially indicate that to have not just removed the geyser wires, but also all the wires for the other switches so that the plaque could be taken outside for adjustment might have been a better and more effective plan of action.

This was a bit too much for him to cope with.  He's a jobbing sparky.  Of the old school.  He wasn't going to be told anything by anyone.

Anyway.  It got done.  Eventually.  As you see here.  The wires didn't go back quite as they did before so the wall plaque is bulging ever so slightly and there is a gap where once there was not (bottom right flange).

But it feels surprisingly more secure and there is not a buzz to be had.

As all was being cleared up afterwards I cheekily asked "kya mai accha apprentice hoon?" (am I a good apprentice?).  It actually raised a twisting of the lips which I took to be a smile.  

Possibly a look of horror.  

But I'll go with the smile option.


  1. Well I am glad it got fixed, even though, not to scale. As for the apprentice, he would have thought who is this white lady trying to tell me what to do. ( no offence intended). Wonder how much he got paid? And he would have thought in an ashram who is going to bother about the size and looks of it all. Sigh! Do a job and do it well, not the policy heh!
    Anyways glad you are safe from firing plugs. Vikster and you, not so sure, gathering from the last post. Take care

  2. Hari OM
    No, he's like that with everyone. He is a long-time onsite employee, so classed as an 'ashramite'. Raising even a Hari Om from the man is like the proverbial...


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