Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Return Of Desai

After writing the title to this blog post, I received a call from one of my clients.
Not just any client.
She happens to be my single biggest client with just short of 100 residential and commercial properties in her portfolio.

This past week she contracted my company to design and build her dream bathroom.
The pressure has been immeasurable.
One screw-up, just one tiny oversight, and I could potentially be flipping pancakes for a living. Okay maybe not that drastic, but you get the point.

So everything has been going superbly and according to plan, and any project that goes along without any glitches always gets me nervous.
Even the tiniest of glitches is welcome; it's like a kind of contractors voodoo. We take the small glitches in our stride, knowing that they prevented the bigger glitches from befalling our kin.
Needless to say, with today being the completion date for the project and the voodoo still not exorcised, I was about two stages beyond "Total Panic".
Why did we still have so much material left over after the project was complete?
Why did she only want to tile halfway up the bathroom wall? Surely this was a rather old style, now outdated?
When is she going to inform me of the paint colour for the top half of the walls?

Then she called.

"Kaloo, when are you tiling the rest of my wall?"

The penny dropped.
She had never informed me of the top half of the wall; I had naturally assumed that she only wanted mid-wall tiling as we call it, only because every time we spoke about the detail as regards the wall, she always stopped at mid-level.
She assumed I would go to the top.
I assumed she only wanted mid-level.
The misunderstanding is proof that no question is ever a stupid question!

So tomorrow we take her current smile and convert it into a full-blown orgasmic grin!
She's thrilled with what she's seen so far. I can only imagine what she's going to think when I finally sign off on the project.

Ironic that the post was supposed to be about Desai, and for those who know him, the post ends up being about my Desai-moment!

I guess it could have been worse.
A friend of mine who also happens to be a construction contractor called me a few months back in a state of panic.
It turns out he was given the keys to a clients home to renovate the guest bathroom to look like the en-suite bathroom. The clients were at their holiday home in Cape Town.
He took his team to site, showed them both bathrooms, gave them instructions for the day and left.
When he returned, they had demolished the en-suite bathroom!
How do you demolish the wrong bathroom?

Imagine the panic in his voice when he called me after realising he now had to complete not one, but two bathrooms in the space of a week!

I'd say it happens to the best of us but the truth is that my worst nightmare as regards my projects has never been that crazy or drastic, touch wood!

So tomorrow I write about Desai, since i've had numerous inquiries about his well-being.

Watch this space....