Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Coffee Maker Saga

Today was one of Those Days. I didn’t have grand ambitions for the day. My main To Do list was:

1.     Buy a coffee maker. I’ve been using a small French press that I had stashed in my storage trunk. With visitors coming soon, I knew I needed one big enough to make more than one cup.
2.     Organize my pantry. I had emptied the entire contents of the pantry last week for the painters to come and paint it. This pantry had not been sorted through since, I’m assuming from the expiration date of the spices and the amount of dust, at least 2009. I’ve already sorted through the spices and other food items. However, there’s a large stack of dusty containers and other such items stacked on my dining table. It’d be nice to have my table back.
3.     Read! I have a lot of reading that I need to do for WorldVenture and I’d like to get a lot of that done.

Clearly, my plans weren’t grand. Today, nothing went as planned.

For the past two weeks, I’ve been searching every store I went to for a coffee maker. Every store was either “out of stock” or they had one poor option.

I left the house around 10am to go to Store #1 that I hadn’t looked at for coffee makers. If they didn’t have a good option, there was Store #2 that I had been to that had one option that I was just going to choose if nothing better came along. I was getting desperate. In Store #1 they first told me “out of stock” but then found the notorious one option. I decided to just bite the bullet. As I was checking out, I asked if I could return the coffee maker if I had not used it. Return policies don’t really exist here and don't get me started about warranties. However, I wanted to check and see if Store #2 had any more options before I settled for the mediocre option. The cashier said “yes” and I went on my way to Store #2 where I found the perfect option. The plug for this one was South African and the worker helping me told me that after buying it, I needed to go to customer service and they’d change the plug for me. I bought it and left the store, completely forgetting about the plug. I needed to get back to the house to drop off the refrigerated items that I bought.

Bonus: In that visit, I realized that both of my toilets weren’t working. Nice.

I headed back out to return the coffee pot to Store #1 and stop by Store #2 to get the adapter. This blog would turn into 500 pages long if I detailed the entire return process for Store #1. Let’s just say: it took forever, they couldn’t give me cash back but now I have a random receipt with three peoples signatures that I can use as a voucher for later. I then headed back to Store #2. I didn’t bring the actual coffee maker with me because I figured they’d just give me an adapter. No, they change the actual plug. Bummer. Another store employee heard what I was trying to do and told me to follow him back to the adapters. I thought he was just going to give me one but he said I could only pay for it. So, let me get this straight: the guys up there will change my plug for free OR I could pay an exorbitant amount of money for an adapter. Thanks, buddy, I’ll go with the free option. I headed back home to have lunch. I was getting cranky hungry. Clearly.

Bonus: In that visit, I figured out how to fix my toilets! I was so insanely proud of myself. Our business manager came by in that time. I told him about it and he didn’t act nearly as proud of me as he should have because, seriously, that was a proud moment.

After lunch, I went back to Store #2 with my coffee pot. As they fixed it, my friend called asking what had happened to our 1:00 appointment. It was 1:45. 20 minutes later, my coffee maker had its correct plug and we were sitting in a coffee shop. I got home around 3:45: still annoyed at the day’s venture and with a raging headache.

My To Do list completion today: I bought a coffee maker. Wow. That about kills my American task oriented self. However, I really need to be ok with this. I mean, I also fixed two toilets (!!!) and had a wonderful deep conversation with a dear friend. It’s also life here. So often, things don’t go as planned. I know it…sometimes it’s just hard to live through it.

In my conversation with my friend, we talked about the need for our kids to discover their value in Christ and not in others. It’s a lesson that I need to learn. My value isn’t found in what I accomplish; it’s found in Christ. Tomorrow is a new day to relearn that same beautiful lesson. Happily, the day will start with a cup of brewed coffee.

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