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For the next 365 days, I am focusing on KARMA as my resolution to 2010. I'm open for stories, ideas and kismet. EMAIL ME.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The way it used to be

If you live in the upstate area and you have an appliance to be fixed, I highly recommend Arnold's Appliances and Home Repairs out of Fulton, New York. When I called Maytag about a washer that no longer worked, they gave me Arnold's number. I called, but I cancelled the visit because I thought it seemed silly to have someone come all the way from Fulton. I guessed there'd be something closer.

There was, but for some odd reason (karma, I guess) I chose to call Arnold back and go with him. I'm so glad I did.

Arnold came to America in 1954 when he was 16 years old from Amsterdam, Holland. He had already finished schooling there, but when he came to the United States, they put him into an American high school. He didn't last very long, especially as the teachers puckered his face and tried to get him to say Ws and Ths the way "Americans" do. He went into small mechanics and has never gone without food. Someone has always needed something fixed. Today it was me.

He brought his son along and he helped a lot. Arnold had the knowledge of what to do, but something told me his body had seen better days. I'm guessing he's been through chemo lately.

Even so, through sounds, slight touches here and there, and smells, he knew instantly what was going on. He showed me a trick to jimmy the machine to work (a trick that works 99% of the time), but I was the unfortunate 1% and I needed to get a new water pump for the machine. He drove into the city, got it, and came back to install it by directing his son. And he charged me $35 for his labor.

Now, he and I talked about sending jobs overseas, the cost of higher education, the making of America after World War I, and the art form of his trade. I look to my generation and younger and I think, "Gosh. There isn't a chance we'll ever catch up to the integrity our progenitors had in forming this country. Their work ethic and devotion is simply amazing."

So, if you have a small job you need to get done...I'd call Arnold. I feel like I was blessed to meet him today.

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