First I remove the top of the tank and see it is indeed an angry snake in the form of a defective valve, spitting water at the lid of the tank, and also my face as I peer in to see where the source is. And even though it’s not toilet bowl water, it is water from the toilet, so, yeah, TOILET WATER IN MY FACE!
I venture to one of our fix-it-yourself box-stores and purchase what I need to replace. I return home and heat up a cup of coffee, and add some Bailey’s as a treat to make up for the TOILET WATER IN MY FACE, and read the instructions, or ‘directives’ as they say in Britain, or ‘destructions’ as we sometimes say in our house. There are only six steps, but I notice there are multiple steps under each number, a) b) c), so really there are…21 steps. I take a sip of my Bailey’s coffee. The paper says I will need a bucket, but it’s too cold to go outside to get one, so I grab a plastic mixing bowl and head for the bathroom, instructions and coffee in hand.
- A) Turn off water supply. B) Flush to drain water. C) Place bucket/mixing bowl. Check.
- A) Disconnect water supply.
Back in the bathroom, I roll up my sleeves, kneel on the floor and take the wrench to the…nut, that’s what it is. I murmur the Universal Loosening Incantation: Left is loose, right is tight. But I’m sort of upside down, so is this really right? Correct? After some experimentation, leverage proves to be my friend, and victory is mine! The hose is disconnected! I stand to stretch and give myself a congratulatory sip of Bailey’s coffee and realize a) the hose must have uncoiled and popped its head out of the not-bucket-but-the-mixing bowl and b) the water must not have been all the way off, because there is a pool of water on the other side of the toilet rapidly spreading to the hallway, toward the Kleenex box I moved off the top of the tank, and the notebook I write in for times such as these when I think something half-way interesting might just happen. I jump to the linen closet in the hall for a trashy towel reserved for disasters large and small, and throw it down onto the lake like I’m smothering a fire, and move the sneaky leaking hose to the bowl. I move the tissue box and my partially-damp notebook into another room to spread its smudged pages over a heating vent.
The rest of the process goes without a hitch, and I’m happy to say that unless the toilet is flushing, or filling up afterward, it’s blessedly quiet. I clean up and think they do need to add a couple of suggestions to the ‘May Need’ line on their instructions, though: Towels, and a stiff cup of coffee.