Ah Ikea. Everybody loves Ikea. Ikea makes it possible for all of us to decorate our houses and still have enough money to feed ourselves. I love Ikea. At least I always do when I haven’t been there for quite a while. Ikea is what McDonald’s used to be when I was a kid. I beg to go there but when I am finally there, I wonder why the hell I wanted to go in the first place.
I knew well enough as to not attempt to shop for new furniture during the weekends. That is suicide. Families who should have better things to do, drag their screaming children along. You cannot really see anything because a hundred people are trying to look at the same thing at once. Basically it is as though you voluntarily threw yourself in the pits of reasonably-priced furniture hell. Hence why we decided to go on a Friday night. We had already written down what we needed and so we began our excursion. Because going to Ikea is not simply to shop and go home. You have to go on a whole expedition in order to get what you want. You shuffle past Bjorns and Billys and meet couples who either wet their panties when they see a side-table they like or those who are heading straight to a divorced caused by disagreements over the colour of the new couch. All the while you have to keep your eyes fixed on the path because if you stray from the route, you get lost. Period. Ikea is like the ultimate relationship test.
When you finally arrive at the end of your route, you have to find your products yourself. You get lost in the maze of boxes and rows and you wonder if you will ever find your home again. “Where the hell are you?” Your safari-partner calls. “I don’t know,” you answer, “I think I’m stuck somewhere in row 27. Help.” “There is no row 27. Oh man and we have 5 minutes until closing time!”
You find the light of day again and as it is 5 to 9, you shuffle towards the tills with all the hundreds of other people and wait as it takes ages for the underpaid student to ring you up. Then (and this is a true story) you take your stuff to the customer service to have it transported to your house and as your mother makes you pay for your stuff yourself (boohoo) you have two different receipts.
“You did not pay for those!” The lady said.
“It is on a different receipt. Here!” My mother answered.
“Well, that clarifies that,” the lady answered, not in the slightest apologetic for having just called a customer a thief. Because everybody in their right mind would nick massive boxes and then ask Ikea to transport those stolen goods to their houses. Makes perfect sense.
It is two to nine and you are dying for an ice cream so you order one but the staff behind the counter is looking at you with accusing eyes as they have lives too you know and you and your stupid ice cream is making sure that they cannot get home before 21.30. So when everything is finally arranged and you have the ice cream (which you had to tap from the machine yourself, like wtf) and you leave through the emergency exit door, they slam the door behind you and your Billy, only to repeat it again for the rest of eternity.
Ikea. I love you. But I think we should take our distance from now on until maybe in two years time I will have the courage to see you again. But thank you for the cheap furniture.
Soon on this blog: Ikea part 2; putting together the furniture.