......or do you deliver?
Dismantling the house is tough.
All I wanted to do after David died was run. Run away. Go somewhere, anywhere. Keep busy. Frantic pace. Go, go, go. Anything to get away from the awful truth. That which I could not change.
And so I cleaned, I sorted, gave away, threw away and held a garage sale. My kids brought up all the junk from the basement and settled it into the garage.
One nice Saturday morning, in August, I got up at 5:00 a.m. and hauled all of the stuff out in the driveway. I did not think. I could not think. So I priced everything at $5.00. Tables, a television, old VCR, dressers, lazy-boy-chair, old tools (well they went for a dollar), electric leaf blower, weed trimmer, my old wood-working projects, bunches of knick-knacks, and old garden rakes, shovels and whatever else was down there. Most of it was sold. The rest I donated.
Then I looked around the living areas. What do I want to get rid of? What do I not want to drag to a new house? One of the first things I decided to let go of was the old stereo system. It still worked (somewhat), so I put ads up at my local grocery store.
A young music student wanted the ancient turntable and speakers. I sold them to her for $20.00. She did not want the rest of the unit. Hmmmm. Now what to do? The tuner and radio were alright, and the CD player was still decent, but without speakers.....
Then there was the stand. Even though it was made of pressed wood, it was still pretty good. I re-posted the ad, asking $15.00 for the stand. The rest I would figure out what to do with later on.
The telephone rang early in the evening.
"Hello? Is this the stereo stand?"
"Um, yes." I answered.
"Well, is it still available?"
"Yes, it is."
"Yes!" This guy sounded really really old. I don't think he could hear very well.
"Yes..." I encouraged.
He coughed once or twice. Said something to somebody else who must have been in the same room. It sounded like "what do I tell her?"
"Yes, I'm still here"
"Could I come and look at it."
Gee, that's a tough one (LOL).
"Sure, when would you like to come over?"
This old codger mumbled something to his roommate. I guess they were conferring.
"Is it still $15.00?"
I hesitated. Actually, I'd forgotten what price I'd asked, since I'd priced and repriced so many items.
"That's what the ad says!" he sounded indignant and grumpy yet I hadn't answered his question.
"Then that's what the price is." I confirmed. "When would you like to come by?"
"O.K. I'll call you later." Click.
Two minutes later the phone rang again.
"Hello? Is this the stereo stand?"
"Ah...um...ah, I don't have a car. Do you deliver?"
I nearly dropped the phone. Do I deliver? Am I a store? A delivery service? For a fifteen dollar cabinet? Well, I couldn't help myself. I had to laugh. Told him I couldn't lift it into my car. He said he'd try to get somebody to help him.
No, this is not the end. There's more.
A few mornings later, I opened the door to see a very old man on my doorstep. He'd come by bicycle.
I just stared at him. I knew who he was because he had called earlier.
"You can't take this home by bicycle!"
"Oh, I know that, lady. I just came to look at it."
I was impressed. He had ridden his ancient bicycle about two miles to get to me and all the roads were uphill. Talk about perseverance and stamina! And he looked about 85 years old!
"Well, come in." I felt bad. I should have just lugged it into my car and delivered the dang thing. "Would you like some tea?" I asked him. It was a cool morning and I felt sorry for the old guy.
"Oh, no thanks, I have the flu."
Oh..... I took 2 steps away from him, as he coughed and blew his nose.
Long story short, he paid me the money, told me I'd miss this really good cabinet (gee, I don't think so) and arranged to pick it up later. Still feeling a little guilty at the old guy coming out when he was sick and on his bike too, I gave him the CD player and radio that went with it. He didn't want it, so gave it to his daughter-in-law, who was driving the pick-up truck.
Hope they enjoyed their treasures.