‘What seems to be the problem?’ the plumber drawled in a thick southern accent as soon as I opened the door.
‘Hilarious,’ I rolled my eyes, walking back inside. He chuckled and followed me in.
‘If you want my plumbing services, you’re gonna have to pay somehow.’
‘Terrible jokes is what you’ve settled on?’
‘Only currency that retains its value,’ he chortled. I rolled my eyes again.
Vanessa came running out of the bathroom, soaking wet and looking incredibly relieved to see my father.
‘Oh, Brian, thank you so much for coming on such short notice,’ she said, clearly fighting the urge to give him a hug.
‘That’s the beauty of retirement,’ he grinned at her. ‘I can offer my drain inspection services around Melbourne, anytime, anywhere.’
‘Well,’ she smiled, ‘I still think you’re a saint.’
‘What’s the problem?’
‘I’m not sure, something with the drain in the bathroom,’ she gestured vaguely down the hallway, unable to even bring herself to look in the right direction. ‘There’s water everywhere.’
‘Sounds pretty standard,’ he nodded. ‘Junior, want to give me a hand?’
‘Me?’ I frowned. ‘Why?’
‘For starters, your clothes are bone dry and your wife is soaked.’
‘I only just got home!’ I defended myself.
‘Just in time to give me a hand then!’ he said, cutting off my protests with a jaunty whistles as he headed down the hallway.
‘Sorry,’ Vanessa mouthed at me, with a smile. I pantomimed being annoyed, then followed after the plumber.
‘Who knows,’ he said once I caught up. ‘Maybe we’ll turn you into the best local drain plumber Melbourne has ever seen.’
‘I don’t see how that would be possible’ I frowned.
‘Hey, I found my passion for plumbing when I was in a very similar situation to the one you’re in right now.’
‘I own a restaurant,’ I protested.
‘That…?’ he asked, leadingly.
‘That collapsed in on itself like a dying star,’ I sighed. ‘Hand me that wrench?’