“The Power Of A Leaf Blower”

How powerful is a leafblower?  Well, it depends.  Manufacturers usually advertise the units’ power in miles per hour.  The faster the speed, the more leaves you can move in a certain amount of time.  There are a lot of different brands and models to choose from. 

The model you see above is the Husqvarna 150.  It’s a decent consumer grade leafblower that fits my needs.  It happens to have  a 2-stroke motor as opposed to a 4-stroke.  In simple terms it just means that you mix the gas and oil together to fuel the engine. Which is where this story begins.

2-stroke motors have a very distinctive high-pitched sound and aromatic exhaust smell.  Especially in dirt bike form.  More on that later.  Those of us who have experienced this know how intoxicating and thrilling it is. The immediate response, the urgent power and hyper personality make 2-stroke machines a lot fun. 

Back to the dirt bikes.  I have a cousin named Herb. We were introduced when I was four years old.  Herb was the older brother I never had and our bond grew stronger even as our lives chose different paths.. His mother, whom we called Dee Dee, and his father, whom we called Sparky, share a special place in my heart and mind.  As a young child I spent summers at their home hanging out with Herb, falling in love with motorcycles, especially 2-stroke dirtbikes.

Now Herb, Dee Dee and Sparky were cool enough as it is, but the fact that they owned MOTORCYCLES made them even more so to a kid like me.  I loved hangin’ out with Herb, being spoiled by Aunt Dee Dee and being taught “how to be a man” by Uncle Sparky.  I don’t see them much nowadays as Aunt Dee Dee and Uncle Sparky have since passed and Herb and I leading separate lives.  But you know, something strange happens every time I start my leaf blower. 

I pull the cord.  I hear the sound.  I smell the “Bel Ray” 2-stroke fumes.  At once I’m traveling through time, back to days long ago.  I hear my aunt telling us to comb our hair, treating us to McDonald’s and allowing her slightly over weight nephew to have “anything he wants” (“he can have 2 Big Macs if he wants to!”).  I’m riding along with Uncle Sparky as we head to the next dirt racing track for the weekend. Mostly though, I am transported instantly into the mischief that Herb and I got into on a daily basis. I could go on and on.  I love and miss them more as life goes on.

So as you can see, my leaf blower is pretty powerful.  Yea, yea it moves leaves with ease and all, but it’s more to it than that.  When I purchased it I had no idea that it could travel through time. And take me with it.  I’m glad it does.  RIP Aunt and Uncle.  What’s up Herb?  Hope all is good.  If you ever have the time, stop by and check out my leaf blower.  You won’t be disappointed. 

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