Destroyed By Fire

by Peta Booker
Bento Buzz exterior, fire damaged.
"I'm beyond heartbroken that, instead of welcoming all our buzzy friends to our warehouse event today, I'm typing this. Overnight we lost our Gold Coast warehouse to fire. My heart is broken and I can't stop crying. I have no other words for now, I need to wrap my head around this devastating turn of events."

It was the hardest thing I've EVER had to type. And I did it through tears. Not a little tear that slowly rolled down my cheek like in a movie, it was through confused, grief-filled floods of tears and loud, chest-aching sobs that I just couldn't control.

Mere hours since I'd been called by the police to ask me if I was the owner of The Bento Buzz, and to tell me my business was engulfed with fire, I had to type it. "Engulfed." That was the word she used. I didn't really process what she was saying, and didn't until we pulled up to our warehouse in the darkness of a freezing Saturday morning to see our whole family business glowing - it was on fire. 

The days and weeks that followed are a blur. My memory is actually really bad, I feel like I have whole days that have just vanished from my brain. I'm told it's the trauma, my brain trying to protect me from reliving that time and keeping me cocooned from it all. But it's not helpful, really. I have the videos and photos, and the footage of the arson attack too. 

Who does that? Attacks a small, family owned business just sitting there? We've been reassured by detectives we weren't meant to be a target. But ultimately we were attacked, and we lost, literally, 8 years of hard work, our business. EVERYTHING. So that doesn't really help to know. We have a lot more questions of course, but we aren't told anything. We're hopeful an arrest is made soon. 

In the meantime, our buzzy small biz has to come back. The Bento Buzz was born over 8 years ago, in my home garage and gosh I loved every, single minute of building this beautiful, bright and buzzing lunch box business each day. It will be at least a year until our Arundel, Gold Coast warehouse and showroom is rebuilt, and I'll try really hard to make it bigger and better than before. For now though, we just need your support to get back on our feet. We have an amazing temporary warehouse (donated by a beautiful friend) to work from and we're back online with our favourite brands of lunchboxes, bottles and bento accessories, doing what we do best. 

Thank you so much for following along my family's journey through this devastating, life altering event. Your support, well wishes and love has helped me get out of bed each morning, and reminded me that we may not have a building anymore, but I do have a community who'll help us come back. And we can do it, one day at a time. 

Love Peta x 

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The Bento Buzz was born from a passion to create deliciously bright and inviting meals for my daughter over 10 years ago. As she grew, my lunch box and bento decoration stash did too... and so did my need to enable everyone else around me and just like that, The Bento Buzz began! Since 2015 The Bento Buzz has been helping parents create fun, beautifully decorated and packed, nutritious and delicious lunch boxes for their busy little bees. Along with an amazing team of mums like myself here in The Bento Buzz hive on the Gold Coast, we ensure you have access to everything you need to make those irresistible lunches. Our buzzy team ensures your online order of bento goodies gets to you as quickly as possible, you’re also welcome to visit our showroom in Helensvale on the Gold Coast. Come see the largest range of bento boxes and fun food-wares in Australia in person, we LOVE to chat lunchboxes, and with our extensive experience and knowledge, can help you choose the perfect one for your busy bees! With love, Peta and The Bento Buzz team X