Saturday, March 27, 2010
"What's that noise? Someone is banging about downstairs. Go and see"
"No, I'm in bed."
"So am I, get downstairs, you baby."
If Ewen wasn't a man I could have kissed him. He was doing the latch on our back door. It has taken six months to fix, I can't do it, being a plonker at DIY and repairs. Better with the chat, me.
All joiners, decorators, handymen, electricians, gardeners, builders in the Glencoe area have a unique marketing style. What Starbucks are to Carpet bomb marketing, they are to Stealth marketing. "Keep your head down lads, and maybe the customer will go away"
Here is how you find a joiner. You drive up and down, and spot one working on the house opposite Catherine's place at Fern Villa. You grab him by the arm, and sell him on the idea of maybe coming to see your job. His name is Ewen, and he does it!
Here is how you find a Glencoe decorator. You ask enough people at the stores, you'll get a name. "Oh, but he is working at the hotel for the next 50 years," they'll tell you. So you now have a name and a location. You've got to con your way past Reception, so look a bit wet, take a notebook in your hand with a pencil in your ear and march up the hotel stairs confidently like a maintenance man. Ask around up there and you'll find him.
Here is how you find a Glencoe electrician. You march into the coffee shop his wife runs, and sooner or later he'll turn up wanting a hamburger. Then you go into your sales pitch again.
Gardener? Ring, go to his place of work three times, text him, ring his home, email him, and seven days later he'll call you in his friendliest manner. From Benderloch, of course.
Thank Heavens for our housekeeper Michelle. Without her, we'd be lost. She is in love with a horse at the moment.
These folks, when you get them, are very very good at their jobs. Really expert. We can't get better ones in the South. We'd be hard pressed to find ones anywhere near as good.
All of this is true. We go to the cottage every winter to catch up with things. Hamish the lovely decorator, tells us why we usually find so little needs to be done. "If you keep your place in good order, well maintained, as you do, then the guests will look after it for you."
You know what? He's right. Thanks guests. You've never let us down yet.
ps I suppose I ought to try and sell you something. How about the week starting April 16th? No one booked in then. No, why should we give anyone a special price, we'll let it anyway before then? Oh go on, then, if you write in the subject line of your email "10% off", then we'll give it to you. Only 'cos we like you.
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