My family and I trekked to the local Home Depot today. We were in search of light bulbs, which were easily acquired, but I was also in the market for something far more exciting. I have been wanting a reel for my hose; oh, not just any reel. I wanted something that wound up 100 feet of hose, all by itself. I wanted it to be portable, preferably with wheels. And I wanted it to not be terribly hideous. A tall order, I know, but one I was perfectly confident our friends at the Home Depot, home of the slogan "you can do it, we can help", could fulfill.
Now, generally when I walk into a Home Depot and head directly for the department I need, I am accosted by any number of over-helpful employees, resplendent in their orange aprons, asking what menial task they could perform in order to make my visit more efficient and/or enjoyable. Whilst I appreciate their concern and attention to customer satisfation, I know exactly what I need and they are only slowing me down, getting in my way, impeding my progress toward home-maintenance perfection. However, and maybe you all have noticed this, the minute I need assistance, there is not an orange apron in sight. I spotted a hose reel, the only hose reel to even closely resemble that which I was seeking, in a box on a very high shelf. A nearby gentleman kindly went in search of an employee to retrieve a reel for himself, and the one I wanted to examine. It took him an eternally long time just to locate the someone, who was on a phone call, but said he would be along very quickly. 15 minutes later, (and we still haven't seen another employee, where was everyone?) the same gentleman decided to climb the shelves to try and retrieve the boxes, a rather dangerous feat, I'm sure you'll all agree. As he scaled the shelves, the employee finally approached, yelling, "sir, sir, please come down..." The gentleman muttered, "It's about damn time", and gestured to the product he wanted. The employee then had to search for a ladder (apparently the ladders were with the other employees...), and finally managed to get the reels down. He complained the entire time about the fact that he did not even work in that department, by the way. He was in lighting.
The moral of this story is, of course; if you must enter a Home Depot, grab one of those orange-aproned employees and hold onto them for your entire visit, just in case. Because if you actually need help, they will scatter like my kids when you mention cleaning. Or anything else vaguely productive.
Oh, by the way; I did purchase the reel he got down. It does not have wheels, but it is portable, and has a handle. Pretty nifty. My hose no longer lies dejectedly on the ground when not in use. So a happy ending all around.