Friday, 10 July 2009

An amazing way to lose something

Today, I made the rather astonishing finding that I had left a rubber component of my cappuccino machine in a plant pot in the garden! I had assumed for a number of days it had been lost in on of our two downstairs rubbish bins and that me and my mother had failed to fish it out. despite removing two complete loads of rubbish and spreading them over newspaper.

Since paleoclimate models show Melbourne poised to become a hyper-arid city by 2020 or so, I have always tried to use waste water on my garden as long as there is no evidence it is not safe. For this reason, I poured waste water from the cappuccino jug onto a citrus tree in my garden on Monday night, and soon found that there was no rubber seal on the cappuccino machine. The rubber seal plays a vital role in preserving the machine because the frothing nozzle will wear if steel wool of any sort is applied to it, whereas with a rubber seal much less milk residue remains on it.

For several days I searched in a manner that suggests that at thirty-two I have finally done something towards improving my violent temper. Over quite some time discussing the issue of the rubber seal I never screamed violently, let alone grabbed anybody as I have a tendency to do whenever a problem which I cannot solve arises.

Ultimately, we decided to look for the Sunbeam spare parts department since we expected that the rubber nozzle cover, being so small a part, would be supplied to customers who lose one. I dithered about visiting in order to work on the computer (only typical), and when I travelled on the 402 bus to North Melbourne I could not find the place and had to use my mobile to find my mother in order to get directions. It turned out that the place was in fact at the extreme northern and of North Melbourne (quite close to the Upfield rail line) and I had to wait for another 402 bus. When I did reach the store, and this being around 16:00 I feared it would close, I asked for the part by number and was told after waiting anxiously that it would not be in stock for some time. Given the risk of damage if the frothing nozzle lacks this rubber part, I was very willing to wait, and I had a surprise gift in a poetry book by Robert Lowell I lost riding the first 402 bus. the very fact that I rang Sita Bus Lines as soon as I found I had lost the book shows that perhaps I am actually improving my maturity as I grow older.

Nonetheless, I always knew that the new nozzle protector would take quite some time to arrive, though the people expected it to come within a week. I had carefully cleaned the nozzle of the cappuccino machine whilst its protector was lost so that there was neither milk residue nor loss of the coating that protected the nozzle from the discolouring my previous machine suffered after losing its protector.

I found the original nozzle protector when putting out the washing this morning and was so amazed that - even with the knowledge I would not get a decent reply - rang up the mobile phones of both my mother and brother to tell them. As excited as I am, I know that a spare nozzle protector will be very valuable in case I do lost the original by a means like I thought I had lost this one, so that the eight dollars spent by my mother on the new nozzle protector is still worth it, she says.

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