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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Suck it up

Our carpets need cleaning. Bad. Only with Tracey 3 months out of work due to baby and Centrelink money delayed until the end of March because apparently they're busy (and "don't whinge to us, tell your local member we need more staff") we don't have a spare $140 to pay a professional to come and do it for us.

Next we considered hiring the machine ourselves from the local supermarket. The cost was $40 for 24 hours, plus the cleaning liquid.

Then I remembered we have a vacuum which I was sure the bloke said could be used to clean carpets.

Now our vacuum is one of those fancy smancy ones - it's a Kirby. I remember when I was 22 and had my first encounter with Kirby vacuums. An English backpacker come to my house to show my ex-wife and me what it could do - we vacuumed  with our existing machine and then he went over the same carpet with his Kirby. He got up heaps more dirt. My ex-wife was in love, although part of me thinks it was just the accent.

Trouble was the Kirby cost more than my car. Not that the backpacker thought that was a problem - "this'll be with you long after that car is scrap" he told us.  Unfortunately I had to decline, though ironically two months later his prediction would have been proven correct as my ex-wife embedded the nose of my classic red Holden Torana into a ditch after spending the night at her boyfriend's place.  Ah, young love.

Ten years later the wonders of Kirby were again being explained to me, only this time by a bloke from Brisbane with no accent at all. Again it was love. Again it was worth more than my car.

The difference this time was we had discovered eBay. While he was showing Tracey why we should hock our car for a vacuum I was in the next room bidding on the previous model. We ended up saving over two and a half thousand dollars - we picked it up, with all the accessories, for $700 delivered.

So the very long and not so short of it is, today I purchased a $12 bottle of carpet cleaning liquid and did the damn carpets myself. I had no idea it was such a noisy process - Miss2 screamed the whole time - but it only took an hour for the whole lot.

Sure, the professional probably would have done a better job (have to say that, he's a mate) but this way we got to keep our money in the bank where we need it for important things, like beer.

1 comment:

Kez said...

When I was pregnant my husband and I thought it would be a good idea to hire a carpet cleaner and give everything a going over. A few weeks later my mum came over to help me steam clean the floors (I was too pregnant to do anything by then) and she thought to bring along her flash carpet cleaning vacuum. She had failed to tell me she even owned one!! Thanks a lot, Mum!!

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Bruce Devereaux is one of the nicest people he knows. When not at work he enjoys reading, writing, hiding from his children and not changing nappies.


His career, and if we used the term any more loosely an e might fall out, has included a gardener, a personal lender, a console operator, a stop/go man (not as big a bludge as you might think but great if you’re into sunburn, abuse and varicose veins), a cleaner of banks and pubs and, for a very brief period, a door to door salesman (until the last door he knocked on was answered by a very scary woman with tremendously hairy legs).


Bruce Devereaux currently works as a forty-five-year-old award winning customer service officer (glass statuette available upon request) for the Bank of Queensland and as a very casual employee for Corrective Services. He likes to believe he excels at both but then he has always been prone to exaggeration.


His favourite colour is green, with a picture of Dame Nellie Melba on one side and General Sir John Monash on the other. His favourite flower is self-raising.

 If you see him around town, call his wife immediately - he's probably snuck out and left her alone with all the kids.


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