I’m stepping back and taking a breather this weekend. The past few weeks have been a bit unsettling.

Life without a fridge

It all started with my fridge breaking down. If you’re a member of the COKANNA Coffee Shop, then you might already know the story. I’ve been posting about my ongoing dealings with Whirlpool. But, just in case, let me give you a quick recap.

Let me start by saying my fridge is only 4 years old. The first repairman (not from Whirlpool) replaced the relay switch, an easy fix. But, alas the fridge did not cool down. After a second visit, the diagnosis was a faulty compressor. This is a major component and not easy to fix because it’s in the sealed section of the fridge. I was refunded 75% of the bill for the previous day’s work. He recommended I contact Whirlpool to see if they’d do anything for me. He also told me if I was going to buy a new fridge, to just get a basic model, no ice maker or anything fancy. It means there’s less things to break down. Btw, If you need an appliance repairman, I would recommend Lee’s Appliance Service.

Dealing with Whirlpool

So I called Whirlpool. After making my way through the myriad of numbered options available, none of which really fit my situation, and then waiting on hold, I was told the best they could do was offer me 50% off a new compressor or 20% off a new fridge. Even though on their website, there is a general warranty in black & white stating major parts including compressors are covered for years 2 through 5. Apparently, my model is not included. No exceptions.

Since a new fridge was not in my budget, I decided to opt for the repair. I was told I had to use their Whirlpool technician to qualify for the limited warranty on the new part plus labour. If I used my own repairman, I would get no warranty at all, not even on the part. Then she couldn’t find a technician in my area. What? You want me to use your service but there’s no one in Ottawa who can come out to Kanata. By this point it was Friday afternoon, so she couldn’t get in touch with any local contractors to see if they would come out here. I’d have to wait until Monday.

On Monday, I got an email stating a technician would be at my place on Thursday between 8 and 4 pm. Great! Except when the technician showed up, he wasn’t there to fix the fridge, he was only told to look at the fridge. Then he could order the part. So here I am 14 days later and waiting for the part to come in.

With a little help from my friend

Thankfully, my thoughtful friend, Anna, came to the rescue. She has loaned me her mini fridge and even delivered it to my door. Now that’s service. Up until this point, I’ve been using a cooler on my balcony.

The last time I purchased a new fridge, I was told they’re only built to last 10 years. What happened to 25 years? Now, that seems to have been replaced by 4 to 5 years with the push to get the extended warranty. What a racket! Not to mention where do all these broken down appliances go?

The one upside to all of this, I have a very clean fridge just waiting for a new compressor.

Taking a breather...by Colleen Kanna, Photo of my very clean and empty fridge.

My very clean and empty fridge.

Cyber security incident

Another thing that’s been going on is a cyber security ransomware attack at Indigo/Chapter’s. You’ve probably heard about it on the news. All employee payroll data was taken hostage. Of course, the company was advised not to pay the ransom. I work part-time at Chapter’s so my personal data, along with all the other employees’ data, past and present, is floating around out there. Plus, all our systems in the store are still not back up and it’s been almost 2 months.

So, I’ve not been sleeping well. I don’t know if this has anything to do with what’s been going on. All I know is I’m tired, a little impatient with my poor dog, and not operating at anywhere near optimal capacity.

Death of a friend

And then, the most upsetting news of all, a dear friend passed away this week. She was an active volunteer and much loved member of the Ottawa Japanese Community. She had terminal cancer. So her passing is not a complete surprise, but it’s still shocking and sad news for all of us in the community.

Giselle always had a positive outlook despite the many setbacks and frequent visits to the hospital. Her calming presence and sense of humour made her a favourite person to be around wherever she went. My daughter fondly called her Giselle the Gazelle which, of course, made Giselle laugh.

Giselle always thought of others, dropping by with little gifts and treats, sending cards, and doing whatever she could to help out. She had just attended one of my coffee shop events less than 2 weeks ago. We had planned to go out for sushi at Suisha Gardens before they close their doors in July. Also, we were hoping to do an Unexpected Journey to Prince Edward County sometime together. We always think there’s time. She will be dearly missed by our community.

Please remember to hug the people you care about and love, and tell them so. It’s never not a good time to let them know. Because the downside is running out of time.

Photo of a red heart outlined in black with the quote "Never waste a change to share your heart." by Diane Button

So today, I pause and reflect and practice some self-care.

As promised though, I will do a blog post about the results of my Design Focus Group, just not today.

Until then,

~ Colleen

Colleen Kanna, Photo by Anna Epp Photography

I’m a recovering Chartered Accountant and Breast Cancer Champion turned Fashion Designer. My COKANNA Canadian-made bamboo clothing is all about comfort and style. Giving back to the community is important to me so I support local breast cancer organizations who treat the whole person and not just the disease.