About a month ago my dishwasher gave up the ghost for a second time. The first time around I got it patched up with a new Aquastop bought off the internet for €90 and fitted by a friendly plumber who accepted a nice dinner with his daughter as payment.
This time around I think it was more serious and something to do with Inbuilt Obsolescence, probably in the computer. The robust German motor is fine, natch. It's everything else that conks out early. Still, I've had it since 2002 so I suppose it's done better than many.
Unfortunately, however, it being nearly Christmas etc. etc. I didn't have the money to buy a new one. I searched high and low on the internet, popped into Darty and positively rushed out, nearly bought one on CDiscount, then didn't, then gave up. We were reduced to elbow grease, my eldest and I, him with much moaning, me with much despair.
Entertaining became out of the question. You might suggest that I don't entertain much anyway so what difference would it make, and you'd be right. But, I like having options, and when you have no dishwasher, your options suddenly take a nosedive. Who wants to spend an evening preparing food, eating a nice dinner, indulge one's drinking because one is not driving, and then face a whole tiny kitchen full of dirty muck? Certainly not me. Call me a lazy sod but my life's my own and I don't intend to spend it enslaved at the sink.
So the other day when I was off work because of Thanksgiving, I paid a visit to Mondial Market which it just so happens is located next to MDA, an electrical goods central d'achat.This means they buy goods at the same price they are sold at to shops like Darty and thus sell them at a super discount.
Naturally, having spent hours on the internet comparing prices and popping in and out of Darty, I was pretty au fait on what sort of price dishwashers cost. Their prices were a wee bit more than the internet, but the machines came with a 3-yr guarantee and they are just up the road. The clincher was deferred payment and fee-free credit.
Woo hoo! But, not being an impulsive idiot, I didn't buy a thing. I went home and thought about it and discussed it with my TWDB. Strong-minded, huh? We went back yesterday - it always helps to have a man about when buying stuff. Sales staff are less likely to think you're just some ditsy chick and tell you porkies as long as your arm. Annoying but true.
Not that they could tell me much as I was already an internet expert and knew exactly what I wanted, from decibel level to deferred start to economic use of water and electricity. Research and ye shall not haveth the wool pulleth over thine eyes!
I picked a snazzy Siemens, mainly because the one I've got is a Siemens and they are water specialists (so good for washing machines and dryers too). Despite not being able to negotiate the price even further down because it was the expo model, I bought it anyway and it's being delivered on Wednesday, installed and the old one whisked away. I start paying in Jan, in five goes, no fee. I couldn't ask for more!
My eldest is over the moon. I might consider entertaining again. Normal life resumes.