Now, it happens that the washing machine and the dish washer are connected to a single tap via a Y junction - can't easily add a second tap or otherwise change it for various reasons. So I knew that I'd have to wash the dishes last night then turn off the water. Which I did - only to discover that the washer was leaking. And belatedly remembered that it was leaking the last time I had to do this, 11 years ago. Not a problem with two machines connected, but a bit of a bugger with a pipe removed, since a pint or so of water a minute was leaking out.
So I disconnected the washing machine hose at the other end and put it on the tap, snaking over into the sink, so that the water just ran down the drain, and apart from wasting water overnight it wasn't a problem.
A while later I tried to disconnect the drain hose from the machine, and a load of water came out.
Being an idiot, I assumed that this meant that water would come out as long as the leakage was running off down the sink. In fact it meant nothing of the sort, there was just a lot of water in the hose. But I didn't think of that, and decided that the best thing to do would be to leave it until the delivery guys were ready to take the old machine away, then quicly cut off the hose and keep the cut end above the level of the sink until I was ready to replace it with the hose from the new machine. For some reason I then faffed around until 3 AM and didn't actually get to sleep until nearly four - not a smart move since they said the delivery could be any time in the morning.
So this morning at 7.30 AM, while I was still eating breakfast, the bell rang, and the plan went into operation. But there was one tiny problem; I somehow managed to cut the dish-washer hose instead of the washing machine. Must say that the delivery guys somehow managed to avoid laughing at me, so 10 out of 10 to John Lewis.
Anyway, I managed to avoid panicking and finished getting the old machine disconnected, stopped water getting on the floor etc., then waited two hours - did I mention that they delivered at 7.30 AM? - to go to the nearest shop that sells plumbing hardware and buy a hose connector, clips, etc. so that I could repair it, and after that installed the new washing machine.
To add insult to injury, when I finally disconnected the remains of the old washing machine pipe I discovered that the hose had only been pushed onto the connector that links it to the sink plumbing (I'd been unscrewing the connector, not pulling on the hose), and was actually fairly loose - so loose that I'm amazed it's never flooded the place. I could have disconnected it and (if there had really been a leak) plugged the pipe in seconds.
Fortunately everything went smoothly with the installation, apart from me getting cramp and hitting my head when I tried to stretch a little under the sink, and the new machine is now running through a preliminary wash cycle to clean it out and check for leaks - don't seem to be any - while the dishwasher has already done a load.
And the moral of this, kiddies, is that next time I install a major appliance I will try to be a little more careful, and get more than three hours sleep the night before...