Take A Walk With Jan #8

Hello, friends! Yesterday, the weather was hovering around 67 degrees and partly cloudy for the majority of the morning and afternoon, so I decided to take Liam to the park. I wanted to let him spend as much time having fun in the sun, since he had a pretty traumatic night the previous day. He fell down while running through the kitchen, and almost bit through his lip. It was so swollen, and there was SO much blood. It was awful. He’s handling it like a champ, but I wanted to give him a really good day.

I made the mistake of wearing a long-sleeve shirt and yoga pants, both black, and started sweating just a few blocks from my apartment. As we walked, it got warmer, and sunnier, and I was very relieved to go into the shade of Subway to get some lunch to bring to the park. However, I had an absolutely bizarre experience once inside. There was a woman finishing up her order when I walked in, and I stood off to the side of where the line would be, since I wasn’t ready to order. An older women walked in behind me, and I immediately smiled and told her to go ahead of me, since I was still deciding, this is a transcript of how this ridiculousness began:

Me: Go ahead in front of me, I’m still deciding.
Woman: *Moving in front of me* Oh, thanks, but I don’t know what I want either.
Me: Oh, that’s okay!
Sandwich Artist #1: What can I make you?
W: *Staring at the menu* Uh, I don’t know… hmm… uhhh…
[4 minutes pass, while the employee and I exchange glances, wondering if this woman has fallen asleep with her eyes open. Two more people walk in and get in line behind me.]
SA #1: Ma’am? Have you decided yet?
W: If I did, you would know. *Turning to me* Bet you wish you hadn’t let me go in front of you, huh?
Me: Oh, no, it’s okay, we’re not in a rush.
W: Mmhm. Okay, well, I’m going to have a ham and cheese on white bread, American cheese.
SA #1: Do you want it toasted?
W: Did I say I wanted it toasted?
SA #1: Right, not toasted then. Any veggies?
W: Nope.
SA #1: Any sauce?
W: *Sighing dramatically* Nooope!
SA #1: Any other sandwiches for you today?
W: Oh, yeah, he’ll probably want something, too. *Turning to me again* Sorry!
Me: Yup. No problem.
W: Steak and cheese, deluxe. NOT. TOASTED. NO. VEGGIES.
SA #1: … Okay. Got it.
[At this point, SA #1 slides the sandwiches over to SA #2, who appears to be new, who is standing at the register, and tells her what they are, before turning to me to take my order. SA #2 does not appear to hear her, and asks her again what the sandwiches are. SA #1 does not hear her ask, so SA #2 just stands there, while W glares impatiently at her.]
W: Hello? How much?
SA #2: Um… what were the sandwiches?
W: Are you joking?
SA #1: *Realizes what is happening* Ham and cheese, steak and cheese deluxe.
[The woman pays, and walks away to a table to fiddle with her receipt and purse. I finish my order, and start the payment process, while the couple behind me begins their order.]
W: OH, I need two drinks with these. Hello? HELLO? I need two drinks.
[No one responds, and she does not get back in line.]
W: FINE, I guess not! I’m going to Casey’s! Bye!
[She leaves, and we all exchange WTF? glances.]

Seriously. What a bitch. Why, lady? Why? There was zero reason for any of the attitude!

Anyway, we left Subway, and headed to the park. Liam started squirming and going a bit crazy once the park came into sight, and as soon as I set him down, he ran off. We were alone at the park, and Liam took full advantage of running, climbing, and going nuts all over the playground. After just a few minutes of being there, I heard, “Mommy! Look! There’s a baby!”, and I turned around to see an adorable little boy charging the playground. He immediately ran up to us, introduced himself as Gideon, and informed me that he and his mommy saw dog poop on their way to the park.

So. Freaking. Cute.

His mom was really nice, she was around my age, maybe a few years older, and had purple streaks in her hair, and a band tee on. Gideon followed Liam around, and every time Liam stumbled, he reached out to help him up. He talked up a storm, too. Telling me about how he was three years old, and how he likes to take naps after he goes to the park, and how he wishes he could sleep at the park, because he liked it there, which made his mom and I laugh. He was the sweetest little boy, and after a very short time, Liam was running around with him and following him as well. It was really nice to see him having fun, as we really don’t get to see other parents and kids very often. At all… ever.

He also may have eaten a very small pebble… still waiting to see if that was actually a thing or not.

After a whopping hour and a half at the park, we headed to Dollar General to pick up a few things. I was sweating so bad. I also walked by a really stupid fight going on in front of the high school a few blocks from our apartment. It was nearly 70 degrees by the time I got home, half dead.

Then we napped. And it was glorious.

Thanks for reading, friends!

Jan

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Dream Journal 2/4/16

Present day.

I went to the salon with Kyle’s mom to get my hair done. The women at the salon all knew her, and were super friendly to her, but completely ignored me. She decided that she wanted to go tanning first, and went into the back with one of the girls, leaving me alone.

One of the stylists cat me in the chair and asked me what I wanted. I was just getting a trim, but decided that I wanted to dye my hair, which is normally medium brown, to a dark auburn color. The woman told me that she was going to have to bleach my hair, and I told her that I had dyed me hair hundreds of times, and had done this color before, and my hair definitely didn’t need to be bleached. She scowled at me and proceeded to mix the dye for my hair. She put it on quickly, and put a plastic cap over my head. Several minutes later, she took the cap off and my hair was WHITE. I screamed, and yelled at her for bleaching my hair. She just laughed. I demanded that she fix it, or I would call the police and file assault charges on her (I guess that’s a thing?). She scoffed, but agreed.

I repeated to her the color that I wanted, and se told me that would be impossible, since my hair was now bleached. She put the dye on anyway, and covered it with a cap. When she removed it, the top half of my hair was BRIGHT purple, and then changed very abruptly to white on the bottom half. All of the girls working in the salon laughed at me, and I stormed out. I waited in front of the building to hours, until Kyle’s mom came out. She took one look at me, and laughed. I started crying, and told her that I wanted to walk home. And she just left.

My phone rang, and it was the police station, saying that the woman who did my hair was claiming that I threatened to kill her, which was not true. They asked my location, and I hung up the phone. I started running down the highway, but I could see a roadblock of police cars in the distance. I ran into the ditch, and hid in the woods that lined the highway. I watched the police, who were later joined by all the girls from the salon, until the sun started to set. Then, I turned and started walking deeper into the woods.

I remember being in a large clearing, littered with tree roots…

And then I woke up.

Family Drama, Car Drama, Drama Drama Drama!

Hello, friends. I have something that I just need to rant about for a minute, if you don’t mind. As some of you may recall, back in September, our Ford Mustang suddenly stopped running, leaving us without a vehicle. At the time, I was still not working, and Kyle was only working one job, and we had no funds to get it fixed, let alone enough for a new car. After going to multiple banks and lenders, and coming away without a single loan for a cheap vehicle, we were forced to ask Kyle’s mother for rides. We reached out to friends and family, to anyone who would help us out, and maybe work with us on payments for a vehicle, as Kyle was about to start working at his second job, a distribution center, and we would soon have enough to make payments on a car.

In late September, Kyle’s aunt informed us that she and her wife had been trying to sell their 2009 Dodge Journey for a while, and had been unsuccessful. Kyle had just started working at the DC, and his paychecks were phenomenal, so when they told us that they only had $5500 left to pay on the vehicle, and we could pay $275 a month for it, we decided that it was within our price range. We even decided to pay $300 a month, since that would help pay it off faster. We realized that we had lost the key for the Mustang, and had to sell it for $800 less than the price we were hoping to get for it. We later found the key, of course.

Some drama went down between Kyle’s aunt and her wife, and we almost didn’t get the vehicle, because they were fighting, and just to spite us, her wife said that we couldn’t have the vehicle. We were so upset. You can read all about that drama in this post. Well, it ended up all kind of working out in the end, and we got the vehicle. The Journey was massive compared to our Mustang. There was so much room in the back seat, and in the back. It was such an upgrade.

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Of course, just like everything else in our life, days later, it started falling apart. We’ve had to take it to several garages, one of which was over an hour away, because his aunt wanted us to use her guys, to fix issues that we were unaware of when we got the vehicle, and have had to pay more in repairs than we’ve paid for the vehicle itself so far. Kyle, who is unable to contain his urges to vent on social media, mentioned car troubles in a status, which caused a shit storm of drama from his mom, grandmother, sister, and aunt, who always seem to find a reason to gang up and attack him. They began putting words in his mouth, and calling us ungrateful, etc. What was his status that caused all of this?

“I just want a vehicle that runs.”

THAT. That was it. Luckily, it blew over pretty quickly.

We were on track to finish paying off the car later this month, once Kyle gets his tax return, but then more shit happened. Of course! Just a few days ago, Kyle asked his aunt to check how much exactly was left to pay on the vehicle, so we would know how much we would have left after paying it off. Her response? $5700. We somehow owe $5700 on a vehicle that we were originally told was going to cost us $5500, that we’ve been making $300 payments on since September. I’m no mathematician, but WHAT?

Now, I know there’s a chorus of voices out there saying something about interest, blah blah blah. Well, we were NEVER told any of this. We were told (and have written proof), that she owed $5500, and that is how much we had to pay. Had we known that it would be over $1000 more than that, we never would have gotten it. Apparently, we also owe more because we are not paying in cash, which would be impossible for us since her bank is over an hour away from us. All of this information was held from us, until we asked about it on that day, and she made us feel like idiots for not knowing all of this. We are furious. Because now, not only will we not be able to pay this piece of garbage vehicle off with our tax returns, but we will still owe more on it, and definitely won’t be able to get the washer and dryer that we were planning on getting, which we DESPERATELY need. So, yea, we’re pissed off.

After Kyle had a word with his aunt, she texted his mom to whine about us (without giving her all the facts, mind you), who then stuck her nose into it, and started bitching about how grateful we should be that we even got a vehicle. A vehicle that we can’t afford, mind you, because we were lied to about the total amount owed, and because we’ve had to put nearly a grand into it in repairs, in just a few months. And we should be grateful? Grateful that she lied to us, and took advantage of us, because she knew how desperate we were? Um, hell no.

We could have kept getting rides until Kyle had saved up a few paychecks to get a vehicle. We would have been fine. But they insisted, and we were excited, because it seemed like a nice vehicle, within our price range. Boy, were we wrong.

So, we’ve been looking into getting a new vehicle. Kyle has been trying to get a small loan, since he now has a decent credit score, but has had no luck, once again. Luckily, we found a guy who is willing to hold a 2005 Lincoln LS for us until Kyle gets his money. It really is a nice car, with only 100k miles (half the amount that the Journey has), and automatic everything. After a bit of negotiating, they agreed on a price of $3200 for it, which includes the cost of title and plates. The dealer apparently knows Kyle from his automotive class back in the high school, and has his own dealership. We had to put down a $100 deposit to hold it, which Kyle was more than happy to do. Our plan is to fully pay off that car with Kyle’s tax return, and then sell the Journey for the remaining amount that we owe, or as close as we can get to it, and be rid of that piece of crap for good. The only problem is that we don’t have the title, his aunt does, of course. So whoever we sell it to will have to wait a bit for them to send us the title, once it is paid off, if she doesn’t sign it over to us beforehand. There’s nothing else we can really do, right?

This has all been so frustrating. Kyle really likes the LS, but I am a bit disappointed about giving up the roominess of the Journey. But, I suppose it is for the best. I am so tired of this drama, and so tired of being called ungrateful, and being judged for no reason. I just want a freaking vehicle that we can all fit into comfortably, that runs well, and that we can fit our damn stroller in. Seriously!

Ugh. I guess that’s it. I’ll update you guys if anything changes or progresses with this situation. This little beauty should hopefully be ours within a month or so, unless something else goes horribly wrong.

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Thanks for reading, friends. Sorry about the rant.

Jan

Negative Dunkin Donuts Experience

Yesterday, we decided to take a family trip to Walmart, mostly just to get out of the apartment, and to top off my supply of frozen vegetables and bubbly, flavored water. Our local Walmart has a Dunkin Donuts inside, and to be honest, we almost never have positive experiences going there, and this time was no exception. But we love Dunkin Donuts, and it is the only one around (there are 2 or 3 Starbucks, but we were already there), so we keep going to it.

Before I tell you what happened, let me tell you something about Kyle and myself. We are both the type of people who avoid confrontation. We are easy to please, and we’ve worked with the public (we both have worked years of retail, and I have fast food experience as well), so we are pretty understanding when it comes to mishaps, slow service, etc. In fact, unless our order is completely wrong, we almost never correct it. I will eat anything and everything given to me, so if I get something I didn’t ask for by mistake, I will still eat it, no problem. Kyle is a lot pickier, unfortunately. No vegetables of any kind, no mayonaise, blah blah blah. So sometimes we have to go in to correct his order. Or if we are charged for something we didn’t get. Stuff like that.

And we are always sickeningly polite, because we’ve been there.

I am also the type of person who enjoys filling out satisfaction surveys, because I love free food, or a chance to win money! Walmart, Target, Taco Bell, McDonald’s, you name it. However, I very rarely fill them out in a negative way, even if we didn’t have a 100% satisfactory experience. Because no one is perfect. I enjoy praising employees by name, and giving specific, positive feedback (for example, I said nice things about a Walmart employee yesterday who smiled and said hello to us, which has NEVER happened in the 5 years I’ve been coming to this location). If I have something negative to say, I don’t usually call out an employee by name, and like I said previously, I am very polite. It goes a long way!

This was not the case yesterday.

After walking around Walmart for a little while, we decided to stop by Dunkin Donuts after we checked out. Since starting my vegan diet, I’ve been trying to avoid Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts, even though they do offer non-dairy options. Trying to be all around healthier, ya know?

I went to one of the tables to feed Liam, while Kyle went up to order an Oreo Coolatta, which is something he has gotten dozens of times in the past. While he was waiting, I noticed a large group of people sitting at the back of the DD, chatting loudly. Two of them were in DD uniforms, the rest were in street clothes. They were gossiping and talking loudly, though I didn’t really mind, and assumed the girls was on break, or off the clock.

Kyle came back to the table, noticeably upset. The drink he held was black, and you could see tons of chocolate syrup on the inside of the cup. Definitely not an Oreo Coolatta. I took a sip, and it honestly made my teeth hurt, it was so sweet! He refused to go up and have them fix it, because he hates confrontation, despite the fact that he didn’t like the drink, and we paid over $3 for it. So I offered to go up and do it for him.

I walked up to the counter, 3rd in line behind two other customers. The elderly man in front of me turned to me and asked about my drink, making small talk. I noticed that no one was at the counter, and assumed the girl was making the guy’s drink who was at the counter. After a few minutes, the guy at the counter cussed loudly and turned to us, asking if we saw the girl working. I told him that she might be sitting at the table with the others (who were now laughing very loudly), and he said some expletive words, before walking off angrily. I noticed that there was no “Be back soon” type sign on the counter, and poked my head around the corner, asking if anyone was working the counter.

The entire group then stopped talking, turned to look at me, and GLARED, as if I had just called them all something awful. One woman, who I believe was a manager, stood up and asked me what the problem was. Her tone was not pleasant. I told her that there was a line waiting, but I just needed her to fix my drink. Then another girl, the one who had made Kyle’s drink in the first place, said very loudly, “Those AREN’T supposed to have coffee you know!

I told her I was aware of that, but the drink was still not right. The manager realized what I was saying, and got to work on making the correct drink for us, while trying to show the girl how to make it properly. It all would have been fine, but the girl had to say an a snarky tone, “Her boyfriend ordered it for her, that’s probably why it was wrong.

To which I replied, “It was HIS drink, which he has ordered dozens of times before. The drink was made wrong.

She ROLLED HER EYES and mumbled something about, “I ain’t never seen it made that way” to the manager, and proceeded to take the order of the man who had been waiting in line with me, while the manager woman fixed my drink. This is how their conversation went:

Man: Do you have mocha in yet?
Girl: What?
Man: Have your mocha flavors come in yet?
Girl: Huh?
Man: … Mocha. Do you have mocha here?
Girl: Oh, you want a mocha?
Man: Well, I want a mocha coffee-
Girl: Coffee?
Man: Yes, a mocha coffee. With the coconut as well.
Girl: What?
Man: A mocha cappuccino, and can you add the coconut stuff?
Girl: Toasted almond?
Man: … No. The-

At THIS point, a third employee, with at least half a dozen dermal piercings in her face (I didn’t think people working in food could have those, I know I couldn’t have my eyebrow piercing in), came up and started talking to the girl taking his order, who then proceeded to stop taking the man’s order, cutting him off mid-sentence, turn around, and talk to the other girl. And no, they were NOT talking about work. In fact, their conversation was very inappropriate to be having at the counter in front of customers.

The man tried to continue his order, now talking to the girl’s BACK, but she completely ignored him. Right. In. Front. Of. The. Manager. Who did nothing! The man looked at me, flabbergasted, then looked at the manager, who had just put my drink on the counter in front of me. She said, “Maybe now we can finish our meeting.” to the girl at the register, then she walked away without saying a word to me, or the man at the counter.

We never even got a receipt, so there was no way for me to fill out the survey, but I did have my Walmart receipt, and decided to include our DD experience on that survey instead.

They give you 1,000 characters to talk about your experience… I used 933 of them.

I was not happy. And neither were the other two customers who were in there.

This is not the first time we’ve had a bad experience at this location, with both managers and regular crew people. We’ve had employees casually swear while talking to us (literally, there was one guy who dropped the F-bomb 4 or 5 times while taking our order and chatting to us, and even though he was nice, it was super inappropriate). We’ve also had bad experiences in the past with both of the female employees who were there last night (not the manager), where they argued and said rude things, despite being wrong about the situation, and refusing to correct it.

And there is no one you can complain to, because the management is just as bad.

I guess I just wanted to rant about it, haha. I have NEVER been rude like that, to anyone, no matter where I worked. If you are that miserable at your job that you have to treat your customers like shit, who are just trying to get what they paid for, maybe you should quit and let someone else, who won’t be a snarky bitch, have your job.

Thanks for reading, guys!

Jan