Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Who turned off the heating?

If you were to see me trying to leave the house in the morning, you may think I have an obsessive-compulsive disorder. We go out the front door and, with key in hand, I have to run back and check the heater in the bedroom. Then I think I ought to check the heater in the living-room. And if I'm already checking, one more run to the back of the apartment reassures me that the heater in the study is off.

The heaters are plug-in radiators which I purchased since the building discarded the central (and centrally controlled) heating. In truth it was a relief to get rid of the radiators on the walls, which were all in inconvienient places and taking up much needed wall space. And the winters are far more pleasant now that the neighbours are no longer arguing over the hours of central heating - "Why should I freeze all day just because I work at home?" and "Why should I pay for the heating to be on all day when I am out at work for 10 hours?" Everyone had a point and there was no solution.

For four years pre-baby I efficiently got up, dressed and out every morning without needing added heat. And I have never worried that I have left the heaters on when I leave. Recently, however, DD has discovered the little buttons and she likes it when the little lights go on and off. So I can never be sure where she has been in the mornings and what she has turned on.

As if this isn't enough to drive me mad, she also knows how to turn the heaters off. So when I have put the heaters on for the evening and snuggled down in my armchair with a cup of coffee while DD plays, after a while I start to feel cold. After another while I check the heaters. Off. This can happen two or three times of an evening. And it's only February 1st!

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