Thursday, June 21, 2012

It's Raining, It's Pouring

Our garden is a mess. Seriously, it's a jungle of weeds and something needs to done. The good news is something is going to be done. Through a friend, I've found a man who is a 'garden whisperer'. When he came over for our first meeting, he didn't see a jungle of weeds, he saw possibilities. In his mind, there were fruit trees where the soursobs are now growing. Although The Garden Whisperer hasn't started work in my garden yet, my friend has been happy with his work. You may have read in an earlier blog about the peaches my friend brought me from her garden. She credits The Garden Whisperer for their quality. His business is Every Day Sustainable Living. Check it out.

The Garden Whisperer is away for two months. I wish he wasn't because the first job he is going to do here when he gets back is install rainwater tanks. I keep watching the current never-ending rain and wish it wasn't going to waste. We could be filling tanks to sustain the garden during the heat and dryness of summer.

The rain has led me to think about the ethics of some businesses. It may seem like I intensely dislike and avoid big business and favour small local business. Generally speaking that is the case. It's really more of a case of knowing the facts about who you're dealing with. For example, I've mentioned before how much I love the Body Shop and what they do. Sadly, they're owned by L'Oreal which doesn't have the same record on ethical products and business. Cadbury use Fairtrade chocolate these days but are owned by Kraft who don't have a good track record on workers' rights. With smaller companies the chain of ownership just isn't as long.

On this rainy day, however, I'm none too pleased with a smaller company. Three years ago, after a bad roof leak, we had a roof restoration done. With the restoration came a seven year guarantee. After the first bad rain following the restoration we had a leak and it was fixed immediately. Subsequently, every time there is a heavy rain, we seem to have a leak. Every time we have a leak I spend weeks chasing up someone from the company to come and fix it.

The company about which I write specialises in roof restorations. I assume their people are very busy doing them and to make the time to come and check a small leak is a low priority. There have been times when I've just wanted to forgot the whole thing and get a local repairer in to do the job. I love conspiracy theories so I began to wonder if the company is counting on people doing just what I'd contemplated. If enough people have restorations at the high price of them and get frustrated enough not to keep chasing the company up when there is a leak, the company would be doing quite well financially. I'm not suggesting that's company policy or anything. To paraphrase from The Pirates of The Caribbean, maybe it's more of a guideline! Unspoken, of course.

I don't really know what's going on but it feels like customers are being exploited. It's definitely not up there with the ethical issues I'm normally so passionate about but I figure in this day and age of Facebook, Twitter and blogs companies would understand that 'word of mouth' carries much further.

I know I just took quite some time off but I'm having another much shorter break of a week to have some quality time with Husband. See you when I'm back on-line.


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