I really don't know what happened but I am up and running again. What we think happened is that we had a leak which did something to the wiring over the patio window and it zapped the wire to the outlet where I had plugged my surge protector. The part I don't understand is that there was enough power to start the monitor but it kept clicking off. Also my printer lights would come on but it wouldn't start. The actual computer would come on but useless without a monitor.
My husband had been doing some nail hammering on the outside and he thinks he may have broken the wire. How I discovered what happened is I borrowed another monitor and cables and they worked from that socket but there was an awful buzzing and zapping in the wall. I changed surge protectors and put the new cables on my equipment and used another socket and voila everything started as it should.
So no new computer I am afraid. I had a good quote and had gone as far as telling the fellow I would be in on Wednesday to start proceedings but had to phone back. I felt a bit stupid, but I still can't figure what happened. None of the other outlets or lights etc. are affected only that one outlet. So we are not going to touch it until my husband can take the gyp rock off and rewire later. I am a bit concerned that it may be dangerous but he thinks it must be at the end of the wiring since nothing else is affected.
Anyway that is the saga of my computer woes. Darn! If I hadn't tried new cables I could have had a new computer and we would have been none the wiser.
However, I suppose it is to the good since I can't really justify it this year with needing a new roof amongst other things. I will have to wait to get one as much as I would have liked to have a new toy. I phoned around for various quotes and The Source by Circuit City which I think is in the States too, said they could build one while I wait, transfer my stuff from the old hard drive, include a 19" LCD screen for under $1000 including tax. Luckily I have been backing up all the stuff I wanted to keep onto the internet because currently I can only write to 31/2 disks anyway. So that is that crises over.. for now.