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» Friday, April 27, 2012Customer Disservice
The first thing I did this morning was sleep late. It's a waste of a good day off, but I haven't had more than seven hours sleep in weeks and I was just plain tired. Ironically, except for waking up every time I turned over in the bed at Unicoi (because the beds are so small), I slept better there than I had in years. Typical of life, as February Callendar always said.
My plan today was to go to Bed, Bath and Beyond for more sheet garters, then stop on the way back to get some Zupreem fruit pellets for Schuyler. Then I remembered I needed to have the car vacuumed and washed. It either hadn't been done since vacation (October) or my birthday (December); I can't remember which. So I went downstairs and pulled everything out of the car, including out of the hatchback, except for the Bracketron unit I use for my phone. It clips very stiffly on the vent cover, and I've left it there before when I've had the car "vetted."
So I get the car to "Mr. Clean" Car Care and get out, because back in 2005 I had a panic attack while riding the car through the car wash. I haven't wanted to risk that again. I chose the $20 cleaning package (wash car, vacuum, Febreeze spray, cleaning the dash-panels-etc.). Last time I chose the $20 package, I said to the gentleman taking the order, "If I get this one, you'll vacuum out the hatchback?" He assured me that the $20 package included vacuuming out the hatchback.
So I watch the car go through the car wash. I remember doing this as a little girl; you had to get your car washed during the winter to get the salt off to stave off accelerated body rot. Dad used to take it to the car wash at the corner of Gansett Avenue and Park Avenue, and I would always go along to watch the car get washed by the automatic arms. Then, since it was only about 75 degrees and mostly cloudy, I went to sit outside. I pulled out something for a tip and then started to check Facebook.
A peppy looking young lady was suddenly at my side, asking how I was. I still had a rotten sinus headache, but I said fine, and she sat down next to me and then started chatting me up about my car. "Is that your PT Cruiser?" Yes, I said. And then she went in this long speal about how I had some rock damage on my windshield and how my insurance probably covered it—unless I had State Farm!—and I could just call my insurance company and they would be happy to fix the rock damage before it got any worse. I was very polite to her, but I really, really hate this type of pressure sale. I took note of the company name on her shirt—sorry I missed that before saying hello to her!—and if I do have damage I will go anywhere but there.
So the person who does the detail work held up the "Ready" sign and I went out to the car, and it looked pretty good. I handed over the tip, got into the car, and noticed the Bracketron was crooked. They had probably pushed the prop leg out of alignment. So I went to straighten it and discovered one of the two mounts was snapped right off at the root. (I found the rest of it later, in the space in the console where you're supposed to put your eyeglasses, although the spring for the lock was completely gone.) (I also had a spider crawling on me, so I popped right out of the car to take care of that!) Well, I came out of the car with the Bracketron in my hand, got the attendant's attention, and said "You broke it." Okay, that was accusative and I shouldn't have stated it that way. The attendant completely went on the defensive: "Oh, I didn't do it. I wasn't even working in that area."
Without going into detail, they flat denied they had anything to do with it. First they told me it must have been broken when I got there. I said, "It was fine when I got out of the car before it went into the car wash." Then one of the attendants offered, "Oh, I found it on the floor when I got into the car, and I put it back up there for you." Odd. Why do that? Why not just hand it to me and said, "I found this on the floor." Maybe...it was because they were hoping I'd drive off without noticing it?" They finally told me they'd "have someone look at the tape" they film of everyone's car (I guess to keep them from being accused of damage) and "get back to me."
Would it surprise you to know that no one called me back? (Yeah, figures.)
Feeling just a tad grumpy, I stopped with my 20 percent off coupon at Office Max and bought another network cable. I'll need it for work soon.
By then it was way after one o'clock; however, I didn't want to put a clean car in a dusty garage, so I parked outside and swept out the garage. Once I had the car back in the garage, I started putting everything back into it. I opened the hatchback to put the shopping bags and the cold bags back inside, and...guess what! They didn't vacuum back there! And when I went to put my rear window sunshades back up, I could still see the marks from the suction cups still on the windows, which means they didn't wash them very well.
Oh, yeah, and in the driver's side door pocket I found whole Munchos left over from vacation.
Really, really disappointed. Epic FAIL, Mr. Clean!
(Incidentally, when I came back inside I went to Bracketron's website. I found my unit and followed a link that said "to request free replacement mounts, go here." So that's what I did: filled out their form and hoping they will not take too long to come.)
My sinus headache was still being a wretched bear, so I took four ibuprofin and lay down for a half hour. Spent the rest of the afternoon surfing the web and waiting for the phone to ring.
[Later: James had a long call and didn't get home until after six. I watched Lassie on Angel2, followed by Skippy the Bush Kangaroo. We had supper at Hibachi Grill, which was the quickest food we could think of, then came home via a long drive through neighborhood streets. Now that the sun was low in the sky, the air was cool as sweet juice and heady with the scent of the privet blossoms, huge bushes growing wild in yards and at roadside, in fields and by corners, scattering their heavenly sweet scent everywhere. There are other flowers blossoming everywhere, scarlet roses studded over big puffy bushes, honeysuckle creeping up fences and poles, pale pink flowers, white waxy magnolia blossoms perched on branch ends, but none smell as exquisite as these tiny white blossoms in the cool evening breeze.]