Wednesday, June 22, 2022

"Welcome to your (this is not an endorsement) journey"

 While working the fire season, I'll often end up feeling like a fly in fly out worker and my house as a hotel where I camp sometimes. The dog looks at me balefully after a twelve day stretch, the washing is not done and I'm pretty much exhausted all the time. So this season I promised to buy myself something nice every payday.

"I thought you meant like a new pair of shoes, a restaurant meal or some expensive makeup," Flame said, "but no! A toolbox, a quiet generator and a podcast recorder!" She didn't mention the leaf blower or Trangia cooking set that I unboxed in front of her - that campers' aluminium wet dream of Swedish design. Anyone who knows what I'm talking about, will know what I'm talking about here.

Anyway ... with one of my pay cheques I headed to the hardware store to buy a battery-powered leaf blower. Yeah I know not where those leaves blow but I live in a gutterless house crouched under enormous gum trees. For those of you in another hemisphere, these trees drop their leaves all year. Though not deciduous, they'll often choose big drops on threat of a storm. It's a weird phenomena seeing them do that but most of the year I'm sweeping between the veranda chairs and I was OVER it. So yes, leaf blower.

I already had a Ryobi drill set and an Ozito circular saw and hedgetrimmer. Being off grid, rechargeable tools are my friend. But the local hardware only sold Makita and Husky tools. This meant I'd have to pay to buy yet more branded batteries and their chargers. It's like buying into Microsoft. I mutter 'you fuckers' under my breath but bugger it, it's pay day. I swallowed all my frugal/sensible/anti-capitalist tendancies and paid up.

As he handed my new purchase over the counter covered in hastily sticky-taped Covid memos and free seed garlic bulbs, the store owner Struth said, "Welcome to your Makita journey Sarah!"

"You're such a wanker, Struth!" I said to him. He looked at me, hurt. It was at that moment I realised he wasn't being facetious. He was a believer. I left the store, both of us taking a look back at each other.

I went to the post office next to check for mail. It's quite often a meeting place, as there is no street letterbox delivery here. Everyone gets their mail from the post office. It's a thing. There I met the local librarian. She saw me holding the boxed leaf blower and said, "Oh wow, you've joined the Makita journey too!" She turned over the box. "Nice," she said. "My next is the skin for a chainsaw."


  1. I, too, am a strong believer in "rewards." You work hard and very long hours away from home so rewards definitely must factor in. You've made some great purchases. Battery powered tools are my choice as well. Some day we'll be driving battery powered cars/trucks. For now, there are to many tech problems so watching and waiting is best (for me).

    1. Hi Susan, Pip, Rachel and Tom, having problems signing into my own account ho hum! X Sarah

  2. I'm looking forward to more flesh on the bones of that podcast recorder mention. Will we be regaled with tales of adventures on this Makita journey you're evidently on? You sound like you've signed up to a cult!

  3. Nothing like making life easier although a leaf blower stretched me a bit.

  4. I recently embarked on a JCB journey by buying a cordless drill made by them. I soon needed a cordless grinder and had to buy a JCB body only (sans battery) because once you have got on board any maker's tool ship you have to use their batteries. It's a good scam.