I should have learnt my lesson. Although, to be fair, they haven’t been half as annoying this time as they were the first.
I wanted a new TV table. Yeah. New year and the fact that the old looks like a Disney drawer with its arse hanging out made me get my own arse into gear and down to the furniture shop. Finding a table I actually liked, and more to the point, would fit in my compact and bijou front room, I paid for it and then the Haggling For Delivery bit began.
This is where I should have remembered the last time I was shafted by this stage in the process. But no. I listened patiently to the man telling me that they could only deliver on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays, and that it was between 10am and 2pm. I selected Monday 7th March and it was a done deal. I said that I had to have the old one taken away - he said no problem, and to remind the driver.
So Monday 7th comes. No ringy, no delivery. I’m due to start work at 2pm so I call up at 1pm and get treated like I’ve pissed on someone’s Christmas tree complete with pretty candles, handmade by their favourite niece and decorated with pictures of kittens:
Voice: Yes. What?
Me: Is this Pricerite?
Voice: Yes. What?
Me: Fine. I’m waiting for my TV table.
Me: It should be today, between 10 and 2. It’s 1pm. If they come now I can still receive it.
Me: So where is it?
Voice: You give me number.
Me: The order number?
Voice: Phone number! You tell your phone number me!
Me: DON’T SHOUT. 69xx-xxxx.
Me: Make it quick.
Voice: Not today-ah.
Voice: Not today.
Me: Yes today. 7th March.
Voice: 14 Mar. You wait 14 Mar.
Me: Why does my paper say 7th March?
Voice: I don’t know.
Skip to Thursday. Yes, Thursday. I’m waiting at the bus stop on my way to work, and the phone rings. Yes, you’ve guessed it.
Voice: Hello Missy. Is Priceriy. Can bring you table now?”
Me: Pricerite? Sorry, no. Monday 14th March, morning, I was told.
Voice: Oh, sorry, because Monday all full. We bring today?
Me: Sorry, no. I cannot be at home. I’m at work.
Voice: Oh. This evening? 5pm?
Me: [*thinks* 5pm isn’t evening.] Sorry no, I’m at work.
Voice: Oh. Maybe later? Maybe 7?
Me: Sorry no, I finish work at 7pm. I need 1 hour to get home. 8pm?
Voice: Sorry, cannot do. Maybe tomorrow?
Me: Between 12 and 3 would be ok tomorrow.
Voice: Sorry, cannot do. Monday?
Me: Monday 14th?
Me: So Monday isn’t full?
Me: [deep breath] Then make it Monday, please.
Voice: Ok. Thank you Missy.
Me: My name’s not Missy. Thanks anyway.
Skip to this morning, Monday 14th. I get up, I empty my TV table - the amp is unplugged from six speaker cables, an HDMI cable, aerials, video ins, the whole job-lot. The DVD player is disconnected from the amp and the telly, the telly is disconnected from the NowTV decoder and the amp, etc… It’s like a skeleton bone song in reverse. So it’s all lifted and moved to the sofa, the table stands empty, everything’s ready.
11am comes and goes. Noon comes and goes. 12:45pm I’m getting ready to leave for work - and the phone rings:
Voice: Hello! Missy! Table for you! We come now?
Me: Yes please!
Voice: Maybe 1 and 3, is ok for you?
Me: 1:15? Ok, do it. Thanks.
Voice: Ok, see you!
So far so good. And the two men do turn up at 1:15 - I go down to the lobby and make sure they come up the right lift, let them in - they get the table knocked up in record time and even put it where I want it. And then I point to the table to remind them to take it.
“We no take,” says the driver.
“Man in shop say you take,” says I.
“Take away is $200.”
“Fine.” Gets money. “There. Split it. Go nuts. Get some San Miguel on the way home.”
“Thank you Missy!”
They depart. I’m left standing looking at a brand new table, a plethora of cables and electrical appliances on the sofa, and the prospect of being late for work.
A taxi ride listening to Muse calms me down, and I get to work just about on time. Job done.
So please, remind me - next time I walk into Pricerite with the intention to buy anything I can’t carry by myself, just shoot me.
~ Hong Kong