Monday, September 19, 2011

Disasters small and large


I just impulse -bought a new blender. Having finally saved enough money to buy a banana (they’ve also gone down to $ 9.99 per kilo), I was going to make myself a smoothie, but alas, my beautiful reproduction 50’s blender wouldn’t go any more.

A friend was about to explore a new shopping complex so I tagged along hoping to find a pair of shoes, when I noticed that blenders were on special at an electrical shop. Not as swish -looking as my old one, but probably quite OK for the amount of blending I actually do. Perhaps I should keep the old one for show and the new one for using. Too bad I have now eaten the banana.

Next up I was congratulating myself on having found and bought an Australian -made outdoor chair which cost about three times as much as a Chinese one, when it suddenly dumped me on the ground. The seat section had neatly ripped right across. I have just replaced this with a complete outdoor setting Made in China, of course –for about the same price. It can hardly do a worse job, but I do miss the Dong Feng days of Chinese industry, before they became capitalist. Those things were indestructible and the language was priceless. My friend Chris still has a torch that promises you arm and shoulder development and mental clarity. I will copy the instructions next time I visit. Hope nothing else breaks. That’s about all the consumerism I can stand for the time being.

On Friday, my Canberra son sent me a text message in the wee hours of the morning saying:
“Don’t worry Mum. We are all OK and have all been evacuated.”

 I tried to phone and couldn’t reach him. How I could I not worry when I had no idea what happened?
Frantically I trawled through the news on the internet. Ah yes. There it was. A series of explosions during the night and a huge fire with flames 200 metres high. Because of the toxic fumes, whole suburbs had been evacuated within a radius of ten kilometres and children were being kept home from school. The fire hadn’t been put out yet, but at least there had only been minor injuries and no loss of life.
When I finally heard from my son, he sounded very relaxed.

“Now I know there is a God,” he said. “I really didn’t want to go into work today and now we all have to work from home.  I’m sitting here in my PJ’s.”
I have a feeling he shouldn’t have wished quite that hard and hope he wasn’t  expecting any video calls.

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