Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Corner Hardware Store

Today I was reminded about why the corner store is so valuable in America.  

Weeks ago, I took Ruth's bike in for a tune up.  Weeks earlier I had done the same for John and had a carrier rack installed and bought matching saddle bags. When the man totaled my order--I was punched in the stomach with a $400.00 total.

Thinking that I'm smarter than the average bear, this time, I took my daughter's bike to REI. They rigged a carrier and threw in a free tune up because we had bought the bike there.  The snaffu was that her carrier couldn't accommodate the saddle bags, because she didn't have an adult sized bike. 

Well, blah, blah, blah, later I had the brilliant idea of bolting a basket to her new carrier frame. I bought the basket, and just needed to find some bolts and screws.  It only took me a month to make it to the hardware store.

Our local hardware store is like going to your dad's house.  They greet you when you walk in the door, and if you need it, they will walk you through the entire process of whatever project you might imagine.

The gentleman that helped me today was like my dad.  He went with me out to my car, looked at the bike in the back,  and helped me think through the project.  Then we went inside to look all around to find the right parts.

He put every screw with its bolts and double washers together for me, so that I would know how to do it at home.  Then we both walked back out to my car and he showed me how to put one on and he made sure that it all fit and worked well.

I never go to the Home Depot anymore.  I value the personal service and patience that the little stores offer.  

Needless to say my daughter sped off with her new cargo rig on her bike.  She flipped the whole thing and herself over two thirds of the way home.  She was fine, but I will be back to visit that hardware store for a bungee cord!  I will tie her and her bag to that bike for safety.

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