Peace River Wildlife Center will be holding our monthly Sunset Celebration, Friday December 12, 2014 at our facility from 4p.m. to 6p.m. Everyone is welcome to join us for a wine and cheese reception. Get a rare glimpse of PRWC after hours as the diurnal birds settle in to roost for the night and the nocturnal species awaken and get ready for the night shift. Best of all; watch an amazing sunset over Charlotte Harbour. Luna will be out on glove for pictures and the obligatory oohs and aahs. And we may have a very special guest or two. We have these events the second Friday of each month from November to March; mark your calendars now so you don’t miss a moment of the fun.
Speaking of fun, who doesn’t love to do laundry? While it may not be at the top of everyone’s favourite hobby list, it certainly is at the top of every to do list. Here at PRWC we have more than our fair share of dirty laundry, emphasis on the dirty. If you have never washed a sheet on which a great blue heron has thrown up a half digested herring, you, my friend, have never done laundry. Did you know that pelican poop turns into concrete after six hours overnight in a hospital cage? Try getting that out of a towel! Then imagine not having a working washing machine.
Due to the heavy workload and unbelievable expectations we place on our washers, they don’t seem to last very long. I’m not sure if it is entirely mechanical failure or if they sometimes succumb to nervous breakdowns. Our current washer is less than two years old and was a top-of-the-line machine when purchased from Bill Smith Appliances at cost. (Thanks to owner, Earl Smith, who has been a good friend of PRWC for years!) Not that there is anything wrong with the machine or our service from Bill Smith. A good washer lasts us a year if we are lucky. The fact that this machine held up for two years is a testament to its quality and determination. But running constantly from 7a.m. to 6p.m. seven days a week really takes it out of a machine. And the amount of soil in the towels and sheets is enough to choke a horse. (Not that we condone that sort of thing.) In the course of a year a normal household does about 100 loads of laundry. We do over 1,500. So we actually get 10 year’s worth of use in one year’s time.
But our washer now sounds like an unbalanced space shuttle trying to drill to the center of the earth. Its need for new shocks takes a back seat to the fact that the entire housing of the machine is rusted practically to dust. (Sounds like my old Volkswagen. Man, I loved that car. There was this one time in high school my girlfriend, Karen, and I …oh, wait. That is a totally inappropriate story for this forum and has nothing to do with back seats and dirty laundry. Or does it?) Anyway, we have been informed that the needed repairs for the washer will cost more than buying a new machine. So, here we go again.
A commercial machine is out of the question. The price alone ($8,000 per machine) is prohibitive and the infrastructure needed for reinforced flooring and special plumbing and electrical is not possible at this time and location. What we need now is a good quality machine, which will cost us about $1,000. We don’t need lot of bells and whistles. The washer doesn’t need to be able to dry clean, sort delicates, or brew your morning cup of coffee. We just need a washing machine that can withstand being run 12 hours a day. Same cycle every time. Hot water, heavily soiled laundry. No shrinking violets need apply.
If anyone has a recommendation for a machine they think would hold up to our abuse, please let us know at 941-637-3830. If you would like to donate toward our “laundry fund”, make checks payable to PRWC. If all else fails, does anyone know the address for Santa?
by–Robin Jenkins, DVM