The boiler that warmed two hearts

Considering it’s Valentine’s month, here’s an interesting story that I thought would be rather fitting.

Ricky, a good friend of mine, and a talented plumbing and heating engineer, received a booking to carry out a boiler inspection. He operates outside of London, mainly in the suburbs.

The customer’s heating was being temperamental; radiators working intermittently, and the hot water lukewarm at best.

Ricky is a gentleman. Well spoken, immaculately presented, and always happy to help.
I’d like him to come and work for us, but that’s another story.

He arrived at the house, right on time, and was greeted by a delightful young lady called Melanie.

Now, there’s something you need to understand about Ricky. People just warm to him. Maybe that’s why he became a heating engineer?. Seriously though, people feel very at ease around him and are happy to divulge things about their lives.

Melanie led him into the kitchen, switched the kettle on, and began to explain the issue with the heating and lack of hot water.

“No problem. I’ll take a good look at it. I’m sure it’s nothing too serious”, Ricky said – reassuringly

As he started to disassemble the front of the boiler, Melanie handed him a coffee and they both engaged in some small talk.
Being cold that month, the weather was a particularly good topic, especially as the radiators weren’t working properly.

Then Melanie suddenly pried, “Are you married?”

“As is happens, I’m engaged. Me and my fiancé are planning to get married later in the year, hopefully in the Scottish Highlands”, he quipped back, without a second thought.

“Your lady is lucky”, Melanie suggested.

“I said to my Jeff the other day, I said, that boiler will break down beyond repair before you ask me to marry you”, she exclaimed frustratedly.

The conversation continued, with Melanie detailing how long her and Jeff had been together, and how she’d previously been engaged to a man that was already married, but she didn’t know that at the time.

At that moment, Jeff walked into the kitchen.
He seemed equally easy-going; introducing himself to Ricky and humorously declaring: “Yep, she had a lucky escape, then she met me”.

Melanie wasn’t overly impressed by the remark, but decided not to make an issue out of it.

By this time, Ricky was getting closer to fixing the boiler.
He realised there was nothing he could do for their romantic relations, and continued his inspection.

He needed to take a closer look at the top of the boiler and used his mini step ladder to do so.

When he reached up, he could see a small dusty-looking box.
There’s usually an old key or bits of junk above these things, but this box certainly looked out of place. Ricky had never seen something like this before.

Jeff and Melanie were on better terms by now, laughing and joking. It was clear that they really loved each other.
Then, Ricky turned to them, box in hand, and said:

“Just found this. Mean anything to you?”

With that, Jeff snatched the item from Ricky’s hand, got down on one knee, opened the box and asked Melanie: “My love, will you marry me?”

At this moment, the boiler fired up, Melanie said yes, and Ricky was puzzled that he’d discovered deliberate sabotage to the boiler. It was an easy fix, but a strange one nonetheless.

Turned out that Jeff was an old romantic. He’d taken on board Melanie’s ‘broken boiler’ comment, and decided to do something about it.

He deliberately orchestrated the scenario with the boiler problem in order to propose.

Ricky said that at that moment, Jeff and Melonie shot upstairs and simply instructed him to let himself out when he was done.
And that was that.

A happy ending with two warm hearts, and one warm home.

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