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Something about change inspires reflection. 

Recently signing a multi-year lease for our new 2400 sq ft store, showroom and workshop in Warman (nearly 3000 sq ft with the mezzanine) has had me reflecting on the lump I had in my throat when I signed a $83.99/month, month to month contract for our first “shop,” a 35 sq ft storage locker in Saskatoon. Working out of that space was accompanied by a weekly routine of emptying the tools and bins out of the back of our Toyota Echo that I was using as a service vehicle and rolling those tools and bins on dollies through the storage facility to our locker at the beginning of the weekend only to reverse the process come Sunday night. 

Preparing this new space for our purposes has also inspired its own kind of reflection. When you move into a newly built commercial space, you move into a big empty box – a blank slate. Our space has been around for a few years so we moved into a space with history – a space that a number of previous tenants have shaped to fit their own vision, purpose and personality. Some of those changes we loved and incorporated, like the structural elements of the mezzanine, and the atmospheric elements such as the front desk backdrop and the overhead beams with lighting in the showroom. 

Other elements were drawn from a pool of raw material left behind. For example, we inherited quite a collection of paint that included a good 30 litres of primer, along with multiple pails of coloured paint, including a full pail that was mixed back in 2011 and another mixed in 2014. I don’t know that I would have gone out of my way to choose those exact colours, but they were there so I tried them and really liked them! My sincere gratitude to whoever left behind the primer!

Even though some elements just needed to go, such as the pink and yellow paint that graced the walls of the front entrance area, as much fun as it was, I find myself keenly aware of and grateful for the time, effort, finances and passion that tenants before us have invested into this space. Our business is miles ahead because of the investments of others who had no idea we would be following behind them. 

That is almost completely true. As grateful as I am for the work previous tenants have done, as could be expected, I do not find myself grateful for every decision they have made. I don’t want to dwell here so I will provide just one example. Somebody, who shall remain nameless (in large part because I do not know who it was!) spray painted the walls of my office in the mezzanine white without protecting the floor. As a result, sadly, much of the nice commercial laminate flooring is peppered with a monochromatic collage of white paint droplets and smears. Is it a big deal? No. But why did it have to happen? 

Yes! “Why?” It is one of my favourite questions. What is the story behind that choice?

Personally, I find the history of our new home quite fascinating. Everything has a story. Even (especially?) the ‘flaws’ whisper that history. For example, if you know where to look, there are a few places pink paint still speaks to (shouts at?) you. There are some different places where hints of the Upstage Dance Co.’s ‘starburst’ remain on the walls. Even the salt-on-pepper mosaic on my office floor has a story. I don’t know what it is, but I am curious. Was someone up against a tight deadline and needed to make a choice between protecting the floor or actually getting the painting done on time? I would like to know.

I don’t know who is going to come after us in this place or when, but I have been repeatedly reminded over the past few months that nothing in this world is really ours. We are merely the current caretakers, stewards of everything we call “ours,” holding it in trust and making use of it for as long as it is in our possession, but always, eventually, passing it on to those who follow. Sometimes it is better off for having spent time in our possession. Other times not.

This world does not belong to our generation. We benefit from the time, effort, finances and even passion that has gone into building the infrastructure and culture of our city, our province, our country, indeed our planet. We also, in many ways, pay the price of the unwise and sometimes thoughtless choices of past generations. 

Maybe it pays to stop and consider that we are one of the “past generations” of the future? What can we do with what we hold that future generations will thank us for?

I did not get into business to save the world one hot tub at a time. I got into business to feed my family. Regardless, I find myself in the position where one way I can help preserve our local piece of the planet for future generations is by keeping hot tubs out of the landfill. At Unaffiliated Hot Tub Home Care, we do this in a couple of ways. The first, of course, is by repairing hot tubs. We don’t cherry pick the easy fixes. While we don’t think it makes sense to fix every single hot tub, we have been told on many occasions that other service providers were not willing to touch tubs that we have “brought back to life,” so to speak. 

We also keep hot tubs out of the dump through refurbishing and selling the ones people no longer want. Now, not every hot tub that will cross our new showroom floor is a tub that would otherwise have been destined for the dump. And not every hot tub destined for the dump we come across will one day find its way into our showroom! Often, though, it just does not make sense for a homeowner to foot the bill themselves to conduct major repairs, so we can take it off their hands, repair it ourselves (so mostly time invested), and sell it to another customer. There’s another thousand pounds of material that didn’t land in the dump!

How about you? Are future generations going to thank you for the choices you are making today? (If you are taking this as a guilt trip, please stop that right now! Guilt trips don’t help anyone.) It may seem like there are more important ways to steward our world for future generations than rescuing hot tubs from the dump, and in many respects that is true. However, ultimately, is not the most important decision you can make to steward our world well for future generations the decision you are making right now? 

I mentioned a few ways that we can help you be a good steward. We can fix your hot tub, possibly take and refurbish your unwanted hot tub and keep it out of the dump, or supply you with a refurbished hot tub instead of a new one. If being a good steward of what you hold is a value of yours, and what you hold (or would like to hold!) is a hot tub, give us a call or send us a message. We’re here to help.

Restoring peace to your backyard,


We look forward to being of service any way we can.
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