Aug 15, 2022

Man in a Van

At home I build, fix, install and maintain just about everything in our lives. I don’t do it because I am a tight-ass. It is something I find incredibly satisfying and it is my zen. My happy place. It has also given me good reason to accumulate every hand and power tool known to mankind. My workshop is the envy of many.

But alas, every now and again I reach the limit of capability or creativity, my shoulders slump and I resign to the fact I am going to need a ‘man in a van’ to get the desired outcome and this happened last week. I normally service my own ride-on mower but it had an intermittent fault when starting that I just could not figure out so I bit the bullet and phoned the local rural small engine chap Woody and he came and collected the mower. While he had the covers off I told him he may as well give it a service as well.

When Woody returned the mower a couple of days later he filled me in on the starting issue which transpired to have been a fairly major job that I was never going to be able to sort out myself. But the bit that made me pause was the service he completed. A ‘Jamie’ service consists of an oil change, blow out the air filter, check the blades are still whole and pump some grease into any nipples I bump into. Woody’s service was amazing. New plugs, belts and filters, blades sharpened, he found some dodgy bearings and replaced them, diff oil changed and the list went on. And, it was sparkling clean. He even plastic welded a small crack in one of the guards!

The value Woody added to this process far exceeded the amount on the bottom of his bill. I will never again service my own mower. Well let’s be honest, it turns out I wasn’t really! I will stick to my building, painting and landscaping and he can be my king of small engines!

There is a place for experts that add real value to your personal and professional lives where you need to step back and acknowledge that you and your fancy new spanner set are not the right person for the job. In our case, those experts don’t have vans, but silver Ford Rangers!

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