(see Part 1 of “Spared”)
My husband rings the armchairs through first…then leaves ahead of me to get a head start in loading them in to the van, knowing it may take a few minutes to juggle them in. I finish up with the rest…and hand over my debit card.
And the amount exceeds our daily limit! A limit I had a vague memory of setting several months ago when we set up these new accounts.
Said armchairs are already well out the door, into the parking lot and in our van. I have a cart full of great finds: vases, plants, a new rug, step stool, salad bowl, a wall clock…and no money accessible from my account.
“Uh- well this is embarrassing- I didn’t realize I had set a limit…and since the chairs are already out the door…is there anything else I can take off the total…”
The remarkably kind & patient Ikea employee explains the situation- he doesn’t have a way that he can ring in only a few items without deleting the whole order. Plus he needs the actual chairs so that he can ring them through again on a new order. I leave the cart full of delightful finds, apologizing profusely, and blast out the door. Down the escalator I go, sprint across the underground parking lot (with baby in sling), and found Al waiting in the van, all loaded up. And I breathlessly explain that we can’t pay for it!
All the while watching the ticking clock (which read 8:15pm) wondering what we’ll do if we miss the last ferry (…oh Lord, please don’t let us miss the ferry…)
Out come the huge armchairs from the van. Al finds a cart, returns them to a bewildered parking attendant, asking him to take them back to the till…explaining to him that we need to return them…even though they hadn’t been paid for yet!
We pull out of the parking lot- navigating the highways and exits that were more unfamiliar to navigate than they were 15 years ago when we lived in this city…
Oh wow. Spared. By that point, we were not even disappointed. Rather we found ourselves shaking our heads in a moment of “Whaaaat just happened?! How could we be so foolish?”
The bill came to Seven HUNDRED forty-eight dollars… $748! Had we not already exceeded our daily amount on our debit card that day (we had actually travelled to the mainland to buy a used vehicle, so had used cash for that purchase already), or cancelled our credit cards a year previously, those ridiculous purchases could have been a done deal. Returns are not straightforward in a different city, and we would have brought home some unnecessary (however lovely) additions to our home. Delaying other important goals that we put a lot more thought and purpose into than a one hour dash through Ikea!
We were baffled and grateful. Humbled and sobered. And of course, a little amused… at how we humans can be such strange creatures!
And in it all- another “note to self”. Continue to set limits! Though inconvenient at the time, we are so glad that we had the foresight to set a daily limit on our debit card during that bank appointment one day. It spared us a the dreaded buyer’s remorse.
(Oh- and we made the 9:00 ferry. And enjoyed our cruise home together that night!)
Have you made purchases that you later regretted? How do you safeguard yourself from impulsive buying?
Laundry Mom~Kali ♥