Wednesday 6 October 2021

Windows and metaphors

 More and more I realise that there are metaphors for life, if you know where to look. Such as windows...

We have been residents of this flat for five years now and our proposed extended window has been long awaited. The original window was a single pane with a crack and the wood was rotten and when we intended to replace it last year Covid restrictions changed the plans. No biggy considering how other people’s plans had been put on hold, cancelled or been hijacked by disastrous circumstances.

Now for the metaphor - we had a restricted view prior to the pandemic. We didn’t know that our vision was limited or that there was no way of knowing what was about to surface in our lives. No-one could see the pandemic coming and neither Andy nor I could see what our intention of enlarging a window was going to unearth.

However I am getting ahead of myself.

Once restrictions lifted, we booked the work. We were told August, then it was cancelled to September. The 16th in fact! "Great" said Andy, "it can be my birthday pressy to you!"

Then Andy got a phone call to say that the window installation had to be delayed again. Now it was being rescheduled for October. When the situation is one of constant change, emotions can get frayed or alternatively dulled as one hiccup after another encourages stress or distress... in my case, initially it was frustration.

Room ready for workmen...

and now...

Not so much a feature wall as a talking point, and yet no point in talking about it. When tackling the job, the builders started with the inside wall and thank goodness for that, as they found that we have steel wires running perpendicular to the steel beams and no way can they demolish the wall!

So now we are left with a bare wall, the contractor is left with a window we don't want and at present, both the builders and ourselves are out of pocket and none of us know how to resolve the situation at present. 

Architect has been phoned. "Unusual situation" - is his response. Structural engineer's office has been contacted. "He will get back to you"- was his secretary's response... and my response seems to be an unusual calm. I know, not like me. Frustration is gone as believe it or not, I am grateful.

I am grateful that the builders didn't start outside as there could have have been a disaster in the making. Not one of our own choosing but a consequence of our own actions nevertheless.

Now back to windows and metaphors. No-one can ever see what's ahead and no-one can ever know what is hidden from view. All we can ask is that we can see the situation as clearly as we can. Deal with what is immediately in front of us, appropriately, calmly and without demolishing any support structures (relationships) and together seek the best solution.

Putting things into perspective is important and our building "hiccup" is just that, a blip in the anticipated order of things.  Lesson learned - anticipation does not ensure reality.

The only thing we can be sure of at this moment in time is that we are definitely not going to get a picture window!