It’s good to talk

RE ‘Please curb the chat (Observer letters, last week): The opinion of the letter writer to plumbers and taxi drivers must be challenged.

To begin, one person’s idea of verbal diarrhoea will be another’s welcome chance for a chat.

Sweeping generalisations offend the majority, while tenuously being applicable to a minority.

Trades people require good interpersonal skills.

They have to carry on with their work while answering their customers’ queries and providing reassurance.

Remember, it is you who has invited them into your home.

Not offering refreshments, quite frankly, is mean-spirited and not conducive to good working relations.

Taxi drivers and plumbers are frequently on the receiving end of tales of broken marriage, the problem daughter, the lazy ex-wife (or, let’s be balanced, husband).

But importantly, they do not think it is of any interest to anybody else, and do not have the time or inclination to write to notify the world about it.

The letter writer states they are exhausted.

Try working in an extremely hot loft changing a water tank, to appreciate that those people they appear to despise are worth their weight in gold.

We suggest the letter writer asks for a quote and a word-of-mouth reference in future.

Liz Abbott and Juliet Kerins, sisters to Neil Hughes (a plumber),

Caledonian Road, Chichester