Service?

Apologies dear reader but every now and again, writing for blogs can become both a little wearisome and positively daunting as one sits at one’s desk fighting for ideas as to what to actually bloody write. And as luck would have it, it seems that today is going to be one of those days.

But fear not, in referring back to the many and varied manuals I have on the often painstaking subject of blogging, I am told to just write about anything that can carry some form of commentary.

Oh well let’s give it a try then shall we….

Please note that this entry then is not based on a true story. It IS a true story, and is related back to you, exactly as it happened. Ok, maybe I have gone a little overboard in embellishing some of the facts but the bare bones can safely be assumed to be a correct renditioning of what happened and only the name of the store featured within has been omitted – (mainly to protect me from being sued).

 

A year or so ago my wife (still love you babe xxx), had to go away for about 10 days for reasons that are really best left unmentioned (mainly because at the time of writing, I hadn’t made them up yet).

Anyway, I was left home alone with the cats. I didn’t really mind, it gave me a bit of space to slob out for a while (either that or convert the whole house into a massive man-cave). It’s not that my adorable wife was a nag or anything, but a guy simply gets tired of being reminded to pick his clothes up off the floor all the time.

Broken washing machineWell that’s enough of the back-story for now; the real story actually begins about two days before wifey was due to get back home. That was the day our washing machine broke. And when the love of my life gets back from her jollies, naturally she’s going to have a bag full of dirty laundry that she’s going to hope (being the tidy person that she thinks she is, talk about OCD, you know the type), she will be able to get all washed, dried, ironed and hung the very same day.

When I explained to her that the washer was actually broken, she wasn’t overly happy with me. But, having just travelled three times around the world; and all within the space of one day no less, she wasn’t in any frame of mind to give me a chewing out right there and then. Instead, she promised me she’d save that for the next day, when she could make a more proper job of it. Something for me to look forward to, I’m sure you’ll agree.

The next day of course had to be a Sunday. We decided (one – nil to her), to trek out to the local electronics store to buy us a brand new washing machine, since the guarantee on the broken one had already run out months earlier and it would be cheaper for us in the long run to do so.

We went into the store and made our way through all the electrical whizz bang sparklies over to the laundry section where there were signs all over the store promising us next day delivery, seven days a week. And so after much careful consideration, argumentation and a frisson of thought, we found a washer that my wife merrily informed me “we both liked”.

We found ourselves a sales assistant (not an easy job on a Sunday, even in a store as popular as this one) and proceeded to make our purchase.

We then requested next day delivery and that’s when the earth imploded around us. We were told that if we actually bought the washer that day, the earliest that they could possibly deliver it would be the Thursday… So much for next day then!

However… if we came in first thing the next morning (Monday), they could probably arrange for us to have it delivered on the Tuesday. (How the Hell does that work then?)

Needless to say, under strict instruction from ‘she who must be obeyed’, the next morning found me at about 9:06 am, walking back into the same store to re-make the previous day’s purchase and enable the earlier delivery. Everything was finally arranged, the i’s were dotted and the t’s crossed and I was informed that the delivery would be between 7:00 am and 1:00 pm on the Tuesday.

That was satisfactory to me, and so I left ahappy chap.

As the next day dawned, I really didn’t expect the washer to be delivered at 7:00 am, and figured the earliest it would be, would be about 9, although I also assumed it would be closer to the 1:00 pm estimate. Naturally, by 1:30 there was still no delivery. I called the depot and I was told that “the delivery van was having problems”, (Imagine now if you can, a van hauled up at the side of the road, clutching at a bottle of vodka whilst chanting football songs), but they were nevertheless about to leave the depot at any minute in a new one.

So when 5:00 pm rolled around and there was still no washer, I called the shop again.

This time I was told that the delivery van had now completely broken down (Picture the van in rehab) and they would deliver our washer first thing tomorrow. I quizzed them about the second van I was promised, only to get a resounding, “Huh?” And since I really had little or no choice in the matter, fearing for my life at what the missus would say, I protested a little (only to be ignored) and promptly crumbled and said, “OK”.

So the next day dawned (early in the morning, as the sun rises over the horizon, days have a tendency to do that I have found). And to cut an already far too long story short, the washer was finally delivered.

But there’s more…

When I made the arrangements, I was assured that the delivery men would also take the old washer away for us free of charge and without further ado. So guess what?

When they brought the new washer, they said that they couldn’t take the old one away as their van was too small for it. (HUH? How does that one work? The two washers were the same bloody size!). And to make matters worse, they just dumped the new one in the middle of the kitchen floor, still in its wrapping.

Now, to give you an idea of the size of the kitchen I have used for this episode, imagine if you will, a phone booth, double it in size, and you will have a pretty good idea of how big the kitchen in question is. Big enough for dramatic effect I’m sure you’ll agree.

I called the company one more time to complain, where I was duly told that arrangements would be made to pick up our old washer the very next day.

The next day (yep, you guessed it)… dawned. I waited in for hour, after hour, after hour, until finally, at about 5:00 pm, I called to make polite enquiries as to “when our fucking washer was going to be picked up and fucking disposed of”. I was then told that “the washer had already been picked up from the back door and the delivery guys had a signature to prove it”.

Now, I need to make a brief interjection here because the house I chose for this piece backs onto a field. There’s also a five foot something stone wall at the back of the garden.

So in order for our assumed Herculean driver and his mate to pick up the washer from the back door, the chaps would have had to know where to go to actually get to the back of the house, and then had to have lifted the washer up over the wall and into the truck. But all of that notwithstanding, I asked the lady “how the fuck the washer could have possibly been picked up when I was calling her whilst sitting on the fucking thing!”

Summarily I then apologized for yelling and asked when the washer would indeed be picked up.

Now I was being told that the earliest they could get it was going to be the end of the following week, and I would need to get it to the curb myself. I said that was completely unacceptable and out of the question. At the time, I (for even more dramatic effect) had a bad back and would be unable to even move myself, never mind the washer (I really did have a bad back at the time. And many people tell me my front ain’t that good either).

And anyway, we couldn’t use or even navigate our kitchen or the new washer until the old one had been moved and the new one was put in. The lady just said she was sorry but that was the best she could do. So I said that it wasn’t good enough and immediately hung up. (Yeah that told her).

In the end, I had to call the council to take the old washer away. And that in itself took nearly as long as it would have taken the original company to do it, even so, I still had to get it to the curb myself and I had to pay $15.00 on top for the privilege.

So now you know the story of why I won’t go into that store ever again,  the store that shall remain forever nameless.

Or you would do if this story wasn’t indeed a complete fabrication.

After all I’m a Handyman with a specialised knowledge and training in the supply and fitting of kitchens and their appliances. A simple washing machine would have been the least of my worries. And I sincerely hope, that even with my eyes closed, I will always give my customers a much better customer service experience than the one I have just written about.

How did I do? 🙂

 

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