Knock on wood. 

The two little humans, penciled by God and entrusted to me to raise, are healthy young men who are out looking to discover their purpose in this world. I’m most grateful for that every day.

But when my oldest was around seven-years-old he developed asthma.

There are worse illnesses than asthma and at the same time, none worse than asthma.

I spent many sleepless nights with him, reminding him how to breathe and trying to ease his discomfort on nights when, at the change of every season, the attacks came.

“Let me carry his burden, dear Lord,” I prayed every time, as together we weathered the ebbs and flows of the worse affliction my heart has ever had to endure.

And when he regained control of his breathing and asked that I put in a CD for him to watch for a while, I did and stayed with him until, exhausted but breathing normally again, he surrendered to sleep.

On one of those nights as I was turning off the TV and preparing to transport us to bed, I became enthralled by a lengthy TV commercial which featured a handsome man talking about his handsome, yellow vacuum-cleaner. The distinguished English gentleman grabbed my attention when he told me that all vacuum cleaners were not created the same. He assured me that his was different in that it did not release particles of dust back into the air like all other vacuum cleaners did. He convinced me that this was the vacuum-cleaner that would help me to keep an allergy-free environment where house-dust would be dramatically reduced.

As you can already imagine, I already had a vacuum-cleaner and vacuuming was already a constant in my daily life; doing it without a complaint for my son’s health.

“Yes. Let’s buy it,” my husband promised and he started researching the product. But we both went pale when we found out the price which was compounded by exorbitant shipping fees to get it sent to Japan. *sigh*

“How dare you entice me like that, handsome man,” I cursed and I continued vacuuming my floors as best I could.

One or probably two summers later, a postcard in our mailbox announced of a Giant Warehouse Store opening in the outskirts of our area; Costco, it read. Determined to support my local farmers exclusively, I shunned big and impersonal places like that.

That postcard was doomed for the trash.

The only thing that saved it and made me show it to my husband was the fact that it featured a picture of THE yellow vacuum-cleaner that had been the object of my desire for a very long time.

Long story shortened, we became members of Costco and purchased but ONE ITEM that emptied our wallets. My Dyson Vacuum-Cleaner.

Bulky, heavy, noisy, unwieldy, very yellow and very powerful.

Bless your heart, Mr. Dyson… Thank you.

The state-of-the-art Powerball has been my faithful companion for seventeen years with

not a cough,

not a hernia,

not a hiccup to berate it for.

Seventeen glorious years!

Allegrie, which is the name I gave it, did what her maker promised me it’d do for me and after all is said and done, I feel ‘she’ saved me lots of money. Thank you again, Mr. Dyson.

BUT, today I did something that literally broke my heart…

I let Allegrie go!

I let her go by exchanging her for her sleek, poised, very small and very powerful younger sister.

The people at the appliance store saw my tears, my separation-anxiety, and discomposure and assured me they’d give her a good sending-away as they ship her back to where she came from.

“You promise?” I sobbed.

“You have our promise, ma’am” they replied.

My husband took me out to eat ice-cream before returning home with my brand new Dyson vacuum cleaner, which, for the price we paid better last me for just as long as or longer than Allegrie.

In a few days, I’ll christen the new one. Hmmm. I wonder what name will suit her…

Selma is a retired Fifty-something enthusiast of positive thinking. She’s a long time resident of Japan. Visit Selma at
Selma is a retired Fifty-something enthusiast of positive thinking. She’s a long time resident of Japan. Visit Selma at

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