They say money can’t buy happiness, but in some cases it can. One such case is the recent purchase of my new Dyson DC 14 – All Floors vacuum cleaner.
As I have mentioned before, our house is in a bit of a shambles as the result of years of neglect and too many pets. It doesn’t help that the house is old and leaky and the heat and air system has some loose tubes and broken vents. It also doesn’t help that neither Mr. Clark nor I are very big on cleaning; there’s always a lot of other things we’d rather be doing and we usually do them.
For years I’ve burned through inexpensive vacuums at the pace of about one a year. Our environment is just too tough; they can’t survive it. Due to Mr. Clark’s period of unemployment, the vacuum I just retired was three years old and more than worn out. I swear it actually added dust and pet hair to the floor, rather than sucking it up. I could create the illusion of having cleaned by using my old vacuum to blow the dust balls up under the furniture and into the corners nobody sees. But I was definitely not making any real head-way.
Recently I started sweeping rather than using the old vacuum; that was pretty much of a bust, too. All I was doing was rearranging the dust bunnies in hopes that would help in some way. It didn’t; things were getting pretty grim, especially in the rooms with upholstered furniture and area rugs.
My daughter got a Dyson for Christmas from her in-laws and boy, did I envy that gift – especially after I heard about the miracle it worked in her pet-filled, much littler but just as old house. My sister also got a Dyson for Christmas - same deal, lots of pet hair in her life (she’s a professional pet-sitter with wall to wall carpet) and that gift generated nothing but rave reviews…I wanted a Dyson and I wanted one bad.
If you’ve suffered from vacuum cleaner envy or lust, you know that a Dyson is not cheap. They come in several models ranging in price from $200 to over $500. That’s a lot to pay for a vacuum; but, the continued chatter – not only from family, but once I brought the topic up, from people at work - about how a Dyson will change your life had me on board. The only issue was how to afford one?
Shopping the sale papers on Sundays for great Dyson deals became a pastime of mine, as did perusing Craig’s List and the want-ads. Apparently once you get a Dyson, you never get rid of it because there are no used ones for sale, and the sale paper prices just weren’t dipping down into my price range.
After attempting to do a thorough cleaning of our kitchen last week, I announced to Mr. Clark that I was going to start buying one lottery ticket a week in the hopes of “winning” myself a Dyson. His response was to tell me not to spend more than $1 per ticket; when he added that he thought our old vacuum worked just fine, I promptly went out and bought a $5 lottery ticket, then set our old vacuum on the curb, hoping it would find a new home with some clever (and obviously desperate) vacuum repair person.
“There, take that!” I thought, “Now I have to get a new vacuum because the old one’s gone!” Too bad that $5 ticket was a loser… Maybe he got tired of listening to me read Dyson sale prices aloud on Sunday mornings or because he really is a very nice guy who genuinely wants me to be happy, this past Sunday Mr. Clark came up with a plan that got me my Dyson.
“Why don’t we use the money we’re charging the Estonians (see prior columns) for rent this summer (a whopping $10 per week), plus my birthday gift certificate, kick in a little extra and get you a Dyson?” he asked.
It just so happened he beat me to the sale papers that day and found the Dyson of my dreams, deeply discounted “while supplies last” at a nearby mall and, according to his on-line search, there was still one available, so off he went to bring it home for me. Now that’s true love!
I’ve been cleaning all week and the thrill of my Dyson has not worn off. It seems our house was in even worse shape than I knew, but my Dyson is up to the task and the two of us are having a really good time together. I have joined the legions who can honestly proclaim, “My Dyson has changed my life!” Thank heavens for Mr. Clark, who even after 30 years, continues to understand exactly what I need and do his best to get it for me – even if what that is, is a really nice vacuum cleaner.
Lorin Sinn-Clark is a writer for the Barrow Journal. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.