Saturday, November 29, 2014

Ikea Rat Race

In case anyone was wondering what it feels like to be a lab rat, I imagine in to be something like Ikea on a Saturday.

A few weeks ago, I got my new apartment. Yes, I know there should have been an update right away and yes, I have already heard it several times from my mother, who will no doubt comment again. I've been busy. Not busy like I have too much work on my plate and I can't keep up, but too busy not being busy. I've been wandering my neighbourhood and spending time with someone I had missed very much before coming back.

So anyway, back to being a lab rat. I got my apartment, which was furnished, but needed some love to make it mine. And some sheets. And a blanket. And some dishes. So I got up early on a Saturday planning to beat the crowds, and headed to Ikea. Well, apparently Ikea doesn't open before 10 on the weekend, so I had a light breakfast and waited until the floors were open.

I didn't NEED to walk the whole showroom floor, but I wanted to get some ideas about what to do about storage in the bathroom. There is no place to put anything besides the top of the sink, which isn't a counter, its just the sink. So I walked the whole showroom. Wow.

For those of you who know me and my issues, I have to be very focused in those situations, otherwise I end up coming home with much, much more than I need. So I had my notebook with my list of needed items, and my cell phone with the calculator and a pencil for writing down everything.. and I mean everything. Anything that went in my bag got written down, including the price. I wanted to know exactly how much I was going to be spending, and not go over budget. So I walked around. By 10:30 the place was packed and people were everywhere. It was hard not to bump into someone. I found myself looking at dining room chairs at one point and wondered how I even got there and why I was looking at them. I'll probably never know. Except that I want to equate it to what Cinnabon does in malls: they pump the smell of their delicious cinnamon goodness into the mall and you hardly know what happened until you're licking your fingers and looking for a napkin to wipe the rest of the sticky mess off your fingers. Yes, that is what Ikea does with fancy lighting and lovely vases. They make you forget what you came there for in the first place!

By the time I got to the part of the store I actually NEEDED to be in, it was almost noon. Where did the time go??

Also by this time, I am pretty sure the building was over capacity and there was not space to even breathe. But on I soldiered, around the store, to find the many items still left on my list. Still checking my list every thirty seconds and writing everything down, I maneuvered myself and my cart around the hordes of people. This is the part that I equate to being a lab rat. You must find the rug and get it into your cart and get yourself, the rug and the cart safely out of the rug area before someone else runs you down. But make sure its the right rug, not just any one will do. Yes, that is a real thing.

I ended up leaving the rug area without one for my room. I got one for the back door, and one for the bathroom, but there were so many people and I was all by myself... too much stress for such little gain. I can wear flip flops in my room a little longer.

Blankets was another issue. Since I have spare rooms and would like to be able to rent them, I bought bare minimum essentials for them: a pillow, mattress cover and blanket for each. The bedding for each of those came to about 36 euros a piece, which was pretty good, I thought! Then came time to look for things for MY bed. They didn't have the blanket I wanted in a size big enough for my bed. Wtf. So instead of panicking, I decided that the only impulse buy that I was giving myself of the day (which I had already picked up and was a lovely fleecy grey blanket) was actually not an impulse buy after all- it was exactly what I needed. I bought a blanket that wouldn't be quite warm enough for the winter, and the fleecy blanket to go on top! THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is how you justify your choices! (The only blankets big enough for my bed were 85+euros. The blanket I bought was 25 and the grey blanket was 10.. hell ya!)

By the time I finished my rat race, I spent 268 euros and had almost everything on my list. I got a ride home in a cab around 2pm and started the task of cleaning the place from top to bottom and setting everything up.

Now it is almost perfect, my bed is comfy and warm and I love my new apartment!