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Buying garden equipment in Spain

By Mr Grumpy - Fri 22th Apr 2011

I think I mentioned in a previous blog about the misery of gardening in Spain - I hate every second of it, and having a 2000 sq mt plot of knee-high weeds and trees, means that whenever it is either A) Rainy or B) Sunny, the garden inevitably looks a complete mess. Which is currently about 90% of the year.

So after a number of years of begging and borrowing strimmers from various sources I decided to take the plunge and buy both a strimmer and a chainsaw.

And you can get any ideas of those 20 Quid electric strimmers that you see in your local Hypermarket out of you head straight away. I'm talking about a beast with a petrol engine on it larger than many of the mopeds that you see racing around the streets in Spain trying to knock old ladies down.

Not cheap, and so it obviously needed to be a decent one that was A) Capeable of being serviced and repaired, and not a 'cheapo' disposable one, and B) a make where the spares (should they be needed) were easily available.

Which basically meant Stihl or Stihl. More expensive 'Stihl' (see what I did there ?... )

So given that I needed a chainsaw as well, I decided to buy both at the same time in an attempt to bargain for some more discount.

We had done a price check at the local Stihl dealership (who also did repairs and servicing) so we already had a quote that we were happy with. On the Thursday lunchtime I met the Mrs from work, we had a quick 'del dia' and then nipped to the dealership. The same woman that gave us the quote only a few days earlier was kind enough to suggest that we waited until the Saturday to come back and buy the two items, as Stihl were about the start a new promotion, and she would be able to give me a further 60 Euro discount.

I was a bit disappointed not to be able to get my hands on my new toys and start to strim the jungle behind my Finca, but 60 Euros was worth waiting for in the great scheme of things.

So on the Saturday morning, we popped the 10 miles or so down the valley to collect the equipment. Of course, I should have been prepared that they were not open, despite what the sales girl told us and despite that the sign on the door proudly declared that they were open each and every saturday 9am - 1pm.

So even more frustrated at wasting another weekend in the garden - and wasting probably around 80 Euros in both time and money in an attempt to save 60 Euros, we drove away for a second time (or third, if you include when we called for the initial quote !)

Fortunately, when we called the following weekend, all went swimmingly - the owner even assembled, oiled up a started the equipment for us and showed us how everything worked (although I already knew, I just appreciated the Spanish lesson for all the technical bits and pieces). When I spoke the sales girl about being closed on the previous Saturday when she told us to come back, she just looked puzzled and explained that they were closed for 'Fiestas'. She couldn't seem to understand that I found it odd to be told to return on a day that they were not open.

Thankful that I had finally managed to get my new toys, and knowing full well that you can never reason with a Spaniard who is not fully conversant in the languages of logic, I decided to leave it at that and enjoy the week tackling my weeds.

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