My name is Don and I’m an Aldiholic.
It’s been four years, three months and seven days since I last sought a fix from Bunnings, Mitre 10 or any other suppliers of motorised gardening equipment.
I go out to the garden shed early in the morning and sit with my Gardenline four-stroke 161cc 18in cut lawnmower and my Gardenline four-stroke 31cc brushcutter/whipper snipper, breathe in their enticing petrol fumes and immediately feel the urge to head down to my local Aldi store to shoot up again.
I know that the rush I got when I bought these two pieces of machinery won’t last. At the prices I paid, they’re bound to be crap and sooner or later I’ll be down by the bargain bins again, a cap pushed down over my face, discreetly trying to attract the Aldi employee’s attention with hard cash in a pocket, a hand hovering over it.
For you see, items like the Gardenline four-stroke mower and whipper-snipper (pictured) come up on regular rotation in the Aldi bargain bins. It’s addicts like me that scan the Aldi catalogue to check when the next supply comes in.
And if they don’t make it and my cravings get the better of me despite the fact that I’m now at stage 4 of my 10-point Aldiholics Anonymous recovery plan, the Aldi pushers will have something else in those bargain bins – a Gardenline hedge trimmer, a Gardenline four-stroke motor conversion kit to replace the silly old handle on your old Hills hoist allowing it to spin effortlessly and faster; Gardenline two-and-four-stroke engine-powered garden forks and rakes; a Gardenline motorised posthole digger; a Gardenline four-stroke buggy to drive you to your garden shed with its new Gardenline, remote-controlled door that opens silently and smoothly courtesy of its 90cc two-stroke engine.
What’s this I hear you ask? What is this Gardenline range that has gotten me so shamelessly hooked? The very best in two-and-four stroke powered garden equipment from the USA, Great Britain or mainland Europe? German engineering at the top of its precision?
Gardenline is a city of just over 20 million people on the north bank of the Yangtze River in the Qinghai province of China. It wasn’t there a couple of years ago. It produces all sorts of stuff that Victa made in Australia a long, long time ago.
Every person who lives in Gardenline works in the design, production and assembly of the ever-growing Gardenline range. They work very hard to make the Gardenline range better and better, day by day, and they simply hate missing performance targets.
After all, who wants to be taken out back and shot just because the country’s ever expanding middle-class and ruling elite are in desperate need of organ transplants?
Gardenline sits on the opposite bank to Crofton, a city of just over 30 million that wasn’t there a couple of years ago. Crofton produces much of the very best of English kitchen and tableware now flooding the world market. Aldiholics would be aware of the deadly lure of genuine English Crofton crockery or cutlery.
Anyway, back to my own addiction. Strangely, it’s almost the reverse of your standard drug addiction story: where you get hooked on the cheap stuff first and then graduate to the expensive stuff as you seek greater and greater highs.
Years ago, it was Bunnings and a $360 four-stroke 158cc Victa Vantage with the authentic Briggs and Stratton engine. Over at Mitre 10 around much the same time, I shuffled out shame-faced with my Makita two-stroke whipper-snipper ($320).
As my dependency grew and the cash started to dry up for the next hit, it was a perfectly logical transition to the absurdly cheap Gardenline motor mower ($149) and the Gardenline whipper-snipper ($129).
Will these two pieces of garden equipment last until the urge for my next fix becomes too great despite the best intentions of everyone at AA?
Probably not. But at these prices, I’ll probably throw both away and buy new ones if the mower blade (yes, there’s only one) or the whipper-snipper cord or spark plug need replacing. It will be the cheaper option and the perfect excuse for another Aldi fix.
My name is Don and I’m an Aldiholic.
Coming up: My shame at my total lack of patriotism – the treachery of being so un-Australian in buying this Made in China crap and eschewing quality Australian-made products.