10.00 - I go to my place of work to meet BG and Fucking Possessive Jealous French Canadian Leech from Hell so that we can trek off to IKEA as arranged the previous night. Fucking Possessive Jealous French Canadian Leech from Hell is tagging along because he will be driving the rental truck and we needed some testosterone to lug large objects around. Curly couldn't make it due to Larry being a cuntrag and refusing to switch shifts.
10.30 - They finally show up.
10.35 - mandatory cappuccino infusion.
10.45 - Our Really Cool Boss (Please Ignore His Family) pulls his world famous flapjack routine; one minute he's going to give us the company credit card, the next a second party check, the next a second party company check.
11.00 - We call IKEA's info line to double check on requirements for second party checks. The operator informs us that we need a copy of ORCB(PIHF)'s identification, his tax number, and a signed statement of consent. He hands us a blank check.
11.10 - BG asks me "So how are we getting there?" Apparently the battery in her car is shot to shit. Public transport it is.
11.15 - We purchase metro tickets and hop onto the humid, foetid Linea A, settling in for a long ride to the last stop at Anagnina.
11.16 - I immediately kick myself for not having a camera on me to document the first time (and last, I suspect) I have ever seen BG riding public transportation in Rome.
11.40 - We arrive at Anagnina and bumble about looking for the fecking IKEA shuttle bus. Upon asking a public bus driver where the pick-up point is, he informs us we just missed one, but we could take the 507.
11.45 - We get off the 507 at the rear of IKEA and realise that we have to walk all the way around to the front as they have a fucking fence surrounding everything. The good news is that there's a nice brisk wind blowing. The bad news is that it's blow sand from a construction site into our eyes, despite the sunglasses.
12.00 - We enter IKEA. First stop: another cappuccino. And something to eat.
12.05 - Second stop: bathroom
12.10 - We find the truck rental desk and arrange for a truck at around 14.00. Both the BG and I leave our cell numbers.
12.15 - We start at the beginning of the showroom circuit, which is living rooms.
12.20 - I realise I might just punch out BG before the day is out. I had forgotten what an absolute pain in the ass it is to go shopping with her (never mind that shopping is something I normally do under duress). I was promptly reminded when she says to write down the first coffee table we see and then promptly changes her mind upon seeing the next.
14.00 - Lunch.
14.30 - We begin our second lap of the upper showroom circuit. BG has not yet grasped the fact that the vast majority of little incidentals (lights, curtains, kitchen crap) are on the ground floor as she keeps asking me where we can buy it.
15.00 - Living room: done. Two student's rooms: done. I have most of my major bedroom furniture picked out. BG is still hemming and hawing over hers. My head hurts.
15.30 - We make our way down to the lower level and begin picking out plates and silverware. BG and I decide to come back at a later time to pick up more stuff as The Leech has to be back at work soon (actually we all do in theory). We rocket through the incidentals, yet still manage to pick up 2 shopping carts worth of stuff.
15.45 - We enter the warehouse section and corner an employee as a large number of our items had tags reading "Refer to an employee." he informs us that we should have ordered those items with an employee upstairs. BG goes back up to order as she has Zero arm strength. The Leech and I pick up the other items on our list. Oddly enough, we didn't have to order our couch with the upstairs staff.
15.50 - We settle in to wait for BG.
16.10 - Still waiting. I'm starting to wonder how a piece of rolled Scandinavian cardboard would taste as I fucking left my cigs in the office thinking we'd be back in a reasonable amount of time and this day is stressing me out
16.20 - BG arrives, list of ordered furniture in hand. We put the couch on a trolley and go wait in line with our 2 carts and a trolley.
16.25 - We realise that there is only one cash register open that is accepting checks. We switch lines.
16.30 - Waiting.
16.35 - BG and the Leech head over to the rental desk to finish arrangements on the truck.
17.00 - They return. The truck isn't available until 18.00 as Rental Guy gave our 14.00 rental out without bothering to call the two numbers we gave him for contact information.
17.10 - Waiting.
17.20 - We start to get our purchases rung up. I bust out the required info for BG to use the second party check.
17.30 - The Leech and I are standing by our stuff when I notice the first extra IKEA employee making his way towards us. I knew this wasn't going to be simple.
17.35 - The second extra IKEA employee scurries over. Much walkee talkie-ing and flipping through procedure handbooks ensues.
17.40 - I start counting down from 20, the precise number of seconds it takes before BG explodes once The Look crosses her face.
17.40 and 25 seconds - BG explodes. I'm impressed. She's feeling rather patient today, apparently.
17.45 - We are joined by the director, who actually manages to calm BG down. It's a days of firsts for BG, ladies and gents. I go off to call Our Really Cool Boss.
17.50 - I go back inside and we ask the director if we can call Our Really Cool Boss on his phone (we have no reception inside) so that it can be explained that No, we can't just fill out the check and leave it with IKEA and ORCB will come by the next morning with cash.
18.00 - Arrangements are made for ORCB to come to IKEA at 20.00 to fill out the check in person. The director stashes our stuff in a back room. We switch the truck rental to 20.30. BG will drive the truck and The Leech heads off to work after we smoke a cigarette.
18.10 - We head back inside to pick up some more incidentals after counting the sum total of cash that we currently have on our persons.
18.30 - We hear a huge crash. We pass it off as something large being dropped.
18.32 - Another large crash that sounds almost like thunder. We make our way to the restauraunt where there are windows.
18.35 - "Oh fuck. Oh fuck. Oh fuck." Torrential downpour. Our Really Cool Boss was going to be coming on his motorcycle. How the fuck are we going to drive a truck in Rome in a fecking torrential downpour?
18.40 - Might as well shop. We realise that we forgot to get armoires for the two student rooms so we pick those out and head downstairs.
19.00 - Despite the more leisurely pace through the incidentals, the families are now out in force, which means that I'm tripping over crotchlings every five paces. I begin entertaining idle thoughts of testing out our new kitchen knives on the next brat I trip over.
19.50 - We head towards the cash register again, deciding to get the armoires for the two student rooms another time. I idly note to myself how quickly the lines go when you aren't paying by check.
20.10 - Our Really Cool Boss arrives and we go to customer service to explain to the IKEA drone that we need to talk to the shift manager to reactivate and process our receipt, as the director had told us to do.
20.15 - IKEA drone #1 isn't getting it. He calls in reinforcements. BG goes over to the (now) notorious register #14 to see if the cashier can reactivate the ticket there.
20.20 - IKEA drone #2 doesn't get it either; we grow weary of telling the story over and over. Or rather trying to, as #2 keeps interrupting us "But you can't do that..." Duh. Shut up and let me finish telling the story.
20.30 - IKEA drone #2 finally has the bright idea of calling the director. He comes right down.
20.40 - Our Really Cool Boss pays by company credit card. He gets the invoice for tax purposes and our order from the warehouse is queued.
20.50 - We get the keys to the rental truck. BG and ORCB head down to check out the truck and scope out the boys who help load up your vehicle as I wait with our two carts, a trolley and a couch on a trolley.
21.00 - Our Really Cool Boss leaves in order to avoid castration at the hands of his wife (hence the (Please Ignore His Family)). We settle in to wait for our order, #219. Orders do not arrive in numerical order.
21.30 - Still waiting. I note that we seem to be the only two females without a side helping of testosterone.
21.40 - We each eat a hot dog and a panzerotto. Still waiting.
21.45 - We groan rather loudly as #218 comes through. The drones at the warehouse desk are starting to give us funny looks.
21.50 - #219! Woot! Woah. Two carts side by side stacked up as high as my nipples (no, really). Amidst very amused onlookers, I begin to tug and push it towards our other 4 trolleys/carts waiting by the elevator doors. BG head down with a cart to round up the muscle boys who hang around the parking lot to make a few bucks.
21.51 - Whoops. They almost forgot my mattress and the doors to my armoire. We are so fagged out by now that we didn't even notice.
21.55 - Bad news. BG tells me the muscle boys have disappeared.
22.00 - Final cart count after I condense some stuff: 2 shopping carts, 4 trolleys loaded to their maximum capacity. As we are loading the elevator the fucking doors close with both of us on the wrong side. A quick bystander smashes the button for us. We are hysterical at this point. With everything loaded, there is now barely enough room in the elevator for the two of us.
22.05 - Cue the celestial choir. Two muscle boys are to be found. We load the truck. Or rather, they do. One of them then flirts with us. I idly entertain thoughts of giving him a thank you blow job, then discard the idea as I want to fucking go home and I need a goddamned cigarette.
We have just spent 10 fucking hours inside IKEA.
23.00 - After a slightly harrowing drive down Via Tiburtina (a street always full of absolute idiots behind the wheels), we arrive at our place of work to round up Curly, the Leech and the Leech's Inexplicably Nice Yet Weird Friend to help us unload. And to get a flashlight. Our electricity doesn't get turned on until Monday.
23.01 - I finally get a cigarette.
23.05 - It is roundly agreed upon that a libation before we go to unload would have definite salutary effects.
23.35 - If one libation is good, two must be fucking fantabulous, no?
Midnight - We unload the truck. BG stays upstairs with the flashlight as she has problems lifting her laundry bag. She does manage to drop a metal bar on the marble floor in front of the (nosy) doorwoman's apartment beforehand, though.
00.15 - Unloaded. Stinky. Sweaty. We head back to the bar and proceed to get completely hammered. At some point I remember to call my dad for his birthday and BG and I drunkenly babble on about our day and the apartment.
10. Fucking. Hours. In. IKEA.