LAST year my friend Mae decided it was time for a complete overhaul of her tiny bathroom, so Davie, an all-rounder, called in to discuss her options.

After much deliberation on what she could and couldn’t have….

“Should only take a week to rip everything out and plumb in the new suite,” Davie assured my pal, even though he was only available at night-time.

First night.

“Hi Davie, cup of tea and a biscuit?”

“Great ta.”

Second night.

“Hi Davie, cup of tea and a biscuit?”

The third night was the same, and so was the fourth…

“Seriously, Janice, four days in and there was little progress.”

According to my pal, Davie would arrive, have a cup of tea, do a bit of work, then disappear.

Fifth night, still little progress, and Mae found herself holding back on the ginger snaps and tea in the hope that Davie would get on with the job in hand.

By the sixth night Mae didn’t have a toilet or shower any more so was even more eager to get things moving.

Night after night Mae returned home exhausted and exasperated to be greeted by Davie and his never-ending chit chat when all she wanted him to do was finish up and clear off.

“You putting the kettle on Mae?”

Seriously! Three weeks later the job was finally complete when I dared to ask…

“Is Davie doing your new kitchen then?”

“Kitchen?” Mae squawked. “Kitchen?”

And recently, my friend Jackie was given the number of a handyman who was looking for some cash-in-hand jobs.

“I only needed a new light fitted and a couple of other bits and pieces,” she explained. However…

According to Jackie, Eddie eventually turned up at 10:30 in the morning with a tiny tool bag and a rucksack ready to begin. Or so she thought.

“Any chance of a cuppa?” was the request.

“No bother,” she replied, hoping he would soon get started.

“That’s great hen.” Eddie then proceeded to make himself at home at her dining room table and sat back like the lord of the manor as she shouted through: “Milk?”

“Yes please.”

Jackie handed over the mug of tea just as Eddie reached into his rucksack and proceeded to unpack a Tupperware dish with sandwiches.

Obviously, Eddie wasn’t as raring to go as Jackie had hoped, and as she was feeling a bit awkward with a stranger at her dining table, she started doing some housework until her handyman was ready to start the job in hand, but then…

“Do you mind switching the telly on hen?” was the request.

“I like to catch up on the news.”

Jackie did as requested, but sarcastically added: “When you’re ready Eddie, I’ll show you what needs done.”

Sure enough 20 minutes later Eddie slurped the dregs of his cuppa and Jackie gave him her instructions and left him to it. Or so she thought.

Next minute the front door slammed, and she heard his van engine start. Half an hour later and...

“Hi hen, sorry about that,” he grinned.

“I just remembered I had to put on a bet for the 1.55 at Ascot.”

Speechless, Jackie watched as he headed back upstairs to start the first of his tasks.

Now, Eddie was only putting up a new light fitting and Jackie assumed this would be a piece of cake.

“Jackie,” he yelled downstairs.

“Do you have any spare screws?”

Next minute Eddie is back in his van heading to B&Q.

By the time he returned and had finally put up the new light fitting, the hungry handyman was obviously due another break.

“Hi Jackie,” was the familiar yell.

“Stick the kettle on hen.”

Apparently it was now Eddie’s lunch break, and after a long boring saga he was now back at the dining room table rummaging through his rucksack.

By now Jackie was more than a little hacked off.

“Excuse me, Eddie,” she snapped.

“Any idea when you’ll be finished, as I need to nip to the shops?”

“You carry on hen.” He seemed oblivious at how narked she was.

“I’ll rattle through the other bits and pieces and be done by the time you get back.”

Jackie looked on as he took out his Glasgow Times and turned to the racing pages to browse whilst unscrewing the lid of his flask and pouring his soup.

Reluctantly, Jackie left Eddie in the house as she was now ready to blow her own fuse and thought it best to leave him to it.

Returning 40 minutes later laden with shopping, Eddie met her at the front door.

“Oh, I hope you’ve got a nice wee treat in there for me.”

Well that was it. The pin came out and Jackie went ballistic.

Quick as a flash, Eddie grabbed his belongings and sped off in his van out of sight.

“Sadly Janice, that was the quickest he’d moved all day!”