| Posted by Bel | The time is 12.36pm here in Wellington NZ |
Remember when I wrote that rant to the tradesmen who were still working on our place when we moved in, as part of the 30 Days of Me extravaganza? I'm sure you do.
Do you remember me mentioning "all the dust and debris" that was left everywhere? Because I did. I used quote marks just then because I quoting. Myself.
With my reluctance I realised on the weekend that our floors were so filthy I would actually have to vacuum. After making an initial attempt and getting nowhere, I recalled the last time this happened, and my beloved descending into an angry cursed-filled fury, kicking the vacuum cleaner as it made a lot of noise and sucked up sweet F-A.
Because I am a slob, but an organised slob, I found the warranty amongst a pile of random papers and headed out to Kaiwharawhara (what an adventure!) to sort out the hunk of junk.
A very wisened and trustworthy looking man peered over the vacuum cleaner that I had hoisted up onto his benchtop. Various lids had been opened, shutters prised and filters removed. His glasses were slid halfway down his nose in a very professional way. He muttered. He tutted. Then he paused, and said, "Ooh. What's this?"
I froze. I was horrified at the prospect. I couldn't see what he was gesturing at. My mind spun. A condom. A tinny. A condom with a tinny inside. A hot pink lacy G-string with skidmarks and bloodstains AND a condom stuck to it with a tinny inside. A tiny TV playing a tape of me getting ready for my 6th Form ball, using a curling wand to make ringlet tendrils drape down either side of my face as I sing along to Ace of Base. WHAT COULD IT BEEEEEE?????????
I leaned in to look. I looked harder. I looked again.
His finger was pointing at something. No, his finger was the something. There was a fine coating of dust, which he wiped from deep inside the vacuum cleaner's guts.
"What is this?", he said again, almost gleefully, rubbing the gritty microscopic particles between his fingertips, "What do we have here?"
Was it a trick question? Was it a rhetorical question? Was it the babbled ranting of an oft electrocuted madman?
"I think it's, um, dirt?" I said quietly, trying not to sound over-confident. After all, he's the professional here.
The technician slid his glasses up to the bridge of his nose and looked me right in the eye. I was ready to retract my clearly foolish "dirt" claim. What he said next chilled me to the bone.
"Have you had the builders in, have you?"
He proceeded to educate me in the dangers of ever using a vacuum cleaner to tidy up after tradesmen. Apparently nasty substances such as sawdust and dust from OH I DON'T KNOW using an electric saw to cut up tiles in the middle of the kitchen OR SOMETHING can do terrible damage to vacuum cleaners. Particularly snazzy modern bagless varieties that a lovely brother might give to his sister as a present for her wedding anniversary because she is a bit of a slob and doesn't have one.
That kind of dirt (which also extends to talc and baby powder, so watch out nanas and littlies!) will slowly eat away at the engine, gradually making even more frustrating and redundant your attempts at keeping the place tidy.
The vacuum cleaner was declared a write-off and I was advised to buy a cheapie next time I needed to clean up a domestic building site and just chuck it out afterwards. Sadly, I wandered in the direction of their gleaming rows of latest models of cleaners to do some window shopping.
And this is when the only good thing about this story happened!!
They had a DJ ROOMBA! (But I didn't buy it. I just pointed and went "DJ ROOMBA!!" really loudly.)