More about tradesmen.
As for R., the second plasterer that said he would be here on Friday between 3 and 4 pm, he did show up. At 5.15 pm. When he hadn't arrived by 10 past 4, I called his home number (I didn't have a mobile number for him) and left a very terse message telling him not to bother getting in touch with us if he can't get here when he promised. About 4.30 our phone rang, and it was R, obviously on his mobile phone and in a car, as I could hear the sounds of traffic in the background. He apologised profusely and explained that he'd been delayed on his last job, then he got caught up in a traffic jam. Now that I can believe, having been in the same situation at the same time the day before. He said he was on his way home to collect equipment for our job but wouldn't be here for another hour. I said that would be fine, and told him there was a message from me on his answering machine and it would be best to ignore it.
When he arrived, I was sweeping leaves off the driveway, and he got out of his car and said with a grin "Are you Gina?" I knew by the look on his face that he'd listened to my message! Anyway, he was a very nice bloke - not much younger than us, as I'd guessed - and he did a great job fixing the hole in our kitchen ceiling. While he was working, I'd been baking a fruit slice and I asked if he'd like a cuppa, to which he replied "I'd kill for one! I've been on the go since 6 am this morning and haven't stopped", so I offered him some of the slice with his tea. He complimented me on it, but didn't offer a discount on the price....lol.