If you saw my most recent Silent Sunday you may have come to the correct conclusion that our youngest child recently started crawling. With this development comes the need to install stair gates.
I don’t know about you, but I have a very troubled history with stair gates. I just find them the most fiddly and awkward items to install.
You’re probably reading this and thinking; “That must be your fault Adams. Clearly you are a DIY shirker.”
I don’t claim to be the best at DIY but I am no shirker. I frequently judge people on the number of power tools they own. If you reach your thirties and your power tool collection isn’t well into double figures then I will be pulling faces at you behind your back.
But back to the matter in hand. When we moved to this house our eldest was at the age where stairs were still an issue so gates were installed at the top and bottom.
The only thing is I made the mistake of buying a pair of gates form a well-known furniture retailer that specialises in flat pack items. I expected some construction work but to my surprise even the spring-loaded locking system was in bits and the individual components had to be put together. I set to work building the first gate but no matter what I did, I couldn’t get the thing to work and in a Basil Fawlty-esque fit of rage I eventually flung the thing into a skip. I can’t remember what happened to the second one, though I think it may have ended up on Ebay.
These were the days when I had a job and so I could afford to visit a different retailer and bought a further two gates, this time spending more money on them. I managed to fit one at the top of the stairs but try as I might I couldn’t get the stair gate at the bottom to fit.
We had a builder working on our house at the time. With some embarrassment, I asked him to finish the job.
This he did with little fuss and that particular gate remains in place. Unfortunately the one I fitted at the top of the stairs broke. I think I had unwittingly fitted it to a wall that wasn’t straight and the hinges couldn’t take the strain.
This brings us to the present day. I have just fitted a pressure-mounted stair gate in the door way to baby’s bedroom. I rashly made this purchase on Ebay. To my surprise it fitted in place with ease but the locking mechanism doesn’t work properly and I am now in discussion with the seller about getting a refund.
I wonder what our grandparents did? I bet they didn’t bother with stair gates. It also makes me wonder if moving to live in a bungalow might be a good idea.