don’t buy this mattress from “Canadian” tire, buy local instead

The ferry ride to Bowen Island is a meditation. Twenty minutes: too short to do anything, really, except just “be”. I get out of my car and head to the front of the deck to stand in the rain: a shivering mid-sized  woman in a thin sweater beside her compact car, bobbing on a boat between the rolling clouds and the inky sea. These little moments when I stop – and listen – and see – and feel – and taste the salt in the wind – and touch a sense of Wonder – these moments add hours to my day.images

My friend Cheryl once said, “If you are going to be an island girl, you must take the time to notice the beauty on every ferry ride.” I’m so glad I accepted her challenge. I watch the wispy clouds dance like Matisse naked ladies along the tops of Douglas firs and red cedars and scaly hemlock trees.  Prayer is the art of living sensually (thank you Michael Fox, you fabulous radical former priest, for teaching me what I instinctively knew, and what my mother instilled in me).

Our lovely Bowen house is quiet and drippy. A big fat hobo spider hunchy against the patio window. Smells like wood. Smells clean. Nora and I will build a fire. It’s just the girls tonight and usually it’s the fellows who chop the logs and pull kindling and peel bark, and roll paper like candy wrappers and twist bags into bear sized bow ties for burning.IMG_3056_2

It was a good day. It was a kind day for all. And I get to sleep in my bed, on my own, spread eagle, under the quiet stars. My bed that won’t melt the skin off of me. Let me explain. During the week, Fellow and I (and the kids) cram our clever selves into my East-side condo so we can get the children to school with ease. We were going to put a murphy bed in the living room for us grown ups but we…well…we ran out of money. As most couples do when they get married buy a house and renovate and get their first Costco card.

So, Fellow bought this queen sized blow up mattress at Canadian Tire that was on sale! Whoppee! Unknown-2BYO bed it was called. Sure it will be like camping! It came with its own sort of raised bed frame and the mattress required a lot of hot air.

The first night was plasticky, fumey and bumpy. The second night, whatever they sprayed on the bed had permeated our sheets and made its way onto our skin. I was feverish and red hot, swollen, reeling, I kept having dreams about some creepy New Age chick trying to make out with me while giving me crystal therapy. My eyes like little red piglets squealing on my puffy face. Allergy allergy where is my Claratin?

I had to take a few hours off of work and Fellow stayed home, nauseous and grey.

Once we recovered, about noon, we packed the offending article up in its “made in China” box and cursed its no return policy.

Then we drove all itchy and blinky to the “made in Canada” mattress place on 4th, Magestic sit and sleep, contrite buy-localists.ls Bamboo. New clean. Even the frame is made somewhere out in the valley. We pay – not all that much, actually – for quality. We get the same bed we have here on Bowen. Back to “we know better”. So yes, grateful for natural fibres and firm yet soft yet flat surfaces. Rest is sacred. Here’s to a good night sleep.


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  1. Cathy york

    So happy to receive your articles this week.Sorry you experienced the bad stinky mattress and there was a no return policy.I think I would complain to the “Better Bureau Bisness” association.I love the way you write .Cathy.

    1. Lucia Frangione

      Thank you, Cathy! I did leave a terrible review on the Canadian tire website, BBB is a good idea too. Glad to share the writing with you, thank you.

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