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Got to get ready for company. When you live in a scenic spot, people come. It’s time for a spring cleaning and a full-house refreshing session. I go top to bottom with my vacuum cleaner; but sadly, it has seen better days. It has ceased being my old faithful. I need to schedule a hardware store visit right away for a replacement. This time I will think ahead and get one that does double duty on floors and upholstery, not to mention carpets, blinds, and window ledges.  I want all the attachments and accessories. This way I don’t have to switch from an upright to a canister model halfway through my cleaning.

Sure, I could spend tedious time on line researching and comparing brands, but wouldn’t it be easier to consult with the kind people at the hardware store, ready and willing to help—typical of our friendly Vermont service. I probably already know the staff as neighbors in my small tow. I know I can bombard them with questions without embarrassment. While online descriptions and reviews are detailed, there are some things that aren’t covered specific to your unique needs. You can take forever on the Internet to make a decision, and in the local store it is no different. They will indulge your every question and concern. Such is Vermont life. No one is an alien in these parts. Everywhere you look, you see a friend.

Vacuums are a big deal these days what with the new cyclone and ball technology from Dyson. It is so state of the art. I vote for great design and energy savings. But I confess that I am at sea when it comes to anything beyond the ordinary suction process. I am not into the technological side of the appliance and only care that it gets rid of all the dust and dirt. There are so many from one to five hundred dollars that it becomes a real investment. It is a bigger issue than I expected. Once purchased, the machine stays around for a long time, so it better be good. I would never rebuy the one I had given all the upgrades.

Fortunately life isn’t always about mundane decisions and practical problems. In Vermont there is so much to do and see. Each season has something extraordinary to offer from winter skiing to swimming in a lake in summer. Hikes are great any time depending on what you choose. I am happy as long as I am outdoors and looking into the distance. Living in a small town affords the luxury of unimpeded views. But once or twice a year, I stop everything and attend to the house like any good homeowner. If you live in a pristine setting, you want your environment to match it.