Stephen Fahey: Off the smokes

After having failed miserably over the last number of years at trying to quit smoking cigarettes, last week I tried vaping. My expectations were low because the last time that I vaped was over four years ago, but I’m happy to report that the technology has improved a many-fold. Gone are the days of cigarette-flavoured oils only and tiny reservoirs that need to be topped up every two minutes. We now live in an era of multitudes of flavoured oils, some with nicotine, some without, some with cbd oil. All of which are clinically tested and approved.

To be honest, my research wasn’t as precise as it could have been – I had a general gist of what I wanted and march myself into the vape store to have a chat. The gentleman, Stephen, of all people, didn’t let me down. The model of vape I had ignorantly selected (for its longer battery life) was far too powerful for a newbie like me. Despite losing out on an additional fifty euro, Stephen explained that the model I wanted was total overkill and would likely put me off vaping all together – thus, sending me back to the cigarettes.

Good for me, and return business, but also evident of the spirit of vaping. Cigarettes, and I say this as a smoker of many years, are not just a literal cancer on the world but also a figurative one. Vaping isn’t perfect. And there is still the matter of addiction, on top of the physical damage that vaping can do, but it’s a huge step in the right direction, for us all, as a whole, even those who don’t smoke or vape.

And Stephen encapsulated this spirit seamlessly. He gave me a quick demonstration of how to maintain the vape itself and educated me about the dangers of American vape oils and why they aren’t allowed into Ireland – then he sent me on my way. There was no hard sell. There was no verbose diatribe. There was just straightforward, friendly and succinct professionalism. Pure class.

Now, it might just be that Stephen is the exception. And it might be that most vape store employees aren’t as astute. But if you have reservations about moving away from cigarettes with the help of a vape, as I did, then get yourself down to your local vape store. I think I lucked out with Stephen, so you might get stuck with an obnoxious prat, but talk to them, listen to them and try it. It’s far cheaper than cigarettes and with so many flavours available you’re bound to find something that won’t be wholly offensive.

If you live in or near Clondalkin, get down to the vape kiosk in The Mill and ask for Stephen. Whether you vape or smoke, he knows his stuff and he’s an absolute gentlemen. After all, he’s the reason I’m off the smokes.

Stephen Fahey

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