You already know how Saturday started: the meows of doom, of oh no, when did I last see Pan. And the cleaning of the closet. At the hour my mother refers to as oh-god-hundred (as in, "what time does your flight leave?"). And the throwing away of a soaked-through messenger bag, which I wasn't even going to try to save, since it was the center of the incident.
So there I was, up, risen if not shining, early though certainly not bright. I'm so not a morning person, it took me quite a while to realize that although the first errand I had planned to do was to a place that opened at 9, the one I had planned to do second opened at 7, and I could have gone there early. As it was, I got there by nine, and for me on a Saturday that's actually up and moving pretty early.
This was to go to the Mazda dealership, and I have griped and groused about them before. I bought my car last year, and like it a lot, but I have not had one good service experience with them yet: not one! Their service is awful.
By the way, this is me calmed down. Here's what I scribbled on a bit of paper in the car on Saturday:
I hate 128 Mazda, now calling itself Liberty Mazda. Hate, loathe, despise them.By comparison, do I sound calm now? I do, don't I? Sort of?
Do not buy a car from them.
Most especially, never, ever go there for service. Ever. Do yourself a favor.
Can you see the steam coming out of my ears?
I have just had the most condescending experience ... I could spit. He just about patted me on the head and called me "little girl".
They really are awful. They lie, for instance. I mean, about little stuff, but that will get on your nerves. They just moved their location, and they send out cards announcing the new location, and the hours are on it. They're supposed to be open until 7 certain nights of the week. And I go after work (and the location is not at all convenient to where I work, by the way), and arrive at 5:40, and am told that all the techs leave at 4.
So either the mailing is wrong, or the guy is lying to me.
This is the same place that, when I took my brand new car in, four days after I bought it, took it in to get it inspected and for a couple of things to be installed, when I went to pick it up it took them thirty minutes to find the car. To find it! They couldn't find it! (I had to tell them which kind of car I had bought, and they sent someone around looking for it, since they couldn't find it in the computer, and we all know that if it isn't in the computer, it doesn't really exist.)
Then, last summer, I went in for my first oil change and it took them three hours. For an oil change. And when I wrote them a letter expressing my dismay about their service (they send out letters after every service experience, ironically enough, saying that my satisfaction is very important to them, and to let them know if I'm less than perfectly satisfied), they never responded to the letter. At all. Not one word. Apparently they just want to know if I'm not satisfied: they're not actually planning to do anything about it.
Then there was the time I brought the car in with an actual problem, and it took them two hours to give me a loaner.
But I digress. Are we all convinced they're awful? Good. It's funny that they've changed their name, isn't it? I'm sure they'd say it's because they moved, but they're not that far off 128, really. Anyway, just remember, 128 Mazda, Liberty Mazda, terrible, awful, horrible, avoid, right?
So, why was I going there again? Because I had a small, Mazda-specific problem. The car I have is what they call the 5-door, what I would otherwise call a wagon. When you open the back or fifth door, it lifts up the part that hides all your groceries or what have you, except that the little doohickeys on mine won't stay in lately. So I went in, doohickeys in hand, the day that all the techs were gone by 4, to have them fixed. No techs, no fix, so I went back on Saturday, ready to stay as long as it took (remember: three hour oil change) until it got fixed (except that I would have to leave in about two hours to take Harold to the vet, but I was hoping it wouldn't actually take that long).
So the same bozo was there who told me everyone was gone by 4, and he collared a tech and took him right out to my car. I opened the back, and they poked at the holes for a minute and then essentially stuck the doohickeys back in and said there you go.
I said yeah, but they won't stay there.
The guy said they're in.
I said yeah, but they won't stay in. They stay for a little while, a few days, even, then they come back out. I want you to actually fix them.
He said. If they come out again you can come back.
That was the point at which I said something like Oh you bet I'll come back. I don't think I actually said you bet your ass I'll come back, though I was sputtering so much I'm not sure how coherent I was. I haven't been that mad in a long time.
Up to that point, as mad as I've been at this Mazda dealership, it's been impersonal. This is the first time I've been livid at an actual, specific person. He was so condescending, so "I'm right, you're wrong", so ... I don't even know, smug and jerky in his behavior to me.
I don't think that the customer is always right. I've worked in retail, I know that customers can be wrong and stupid and stubborn, and even when they're right they can be annoying and a pain. But treating a customer the way he treated me is never right.
It's certainly possible that there was something I didn't know about putting the doohickeys back it. It's not like I took them out in the first place, so why would I know how to put them in? If he had explained that they needed to be put in with the ends turned this way so that the whatever interfaced with the whoosis properly, and that therefore they would now stay in just fine, but to bring it back if I had any further problem, I would have said wow, really? That's great, thank you so much. I might have been slightly skeptical of an easy fix, but I'd like to believe, and I'd certainly be delighted if it turned out to be true.
Instead, he treated me like I was an idiot. How is that good service?
So far the doohickeys are still in. I bet they'll come out, but even if they stay in until the car falls apart of old age, he was wrong.
Anyway, wait, my Saturday isn't over yet! That was the low point, but not the end! There's still take Harold to the vet ... in the car, which he hates ... and on the way over, we were joined by a thunderstorm, which terrifies him!
Is anyone else having visions of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day yet?
It was a huge, enormous, torrential storm. Harold was truly unhappy, and I would have rescheduled if I'd known it would be that bad. The drive home was about as bad as I can recall driving through. All afternoon it poured and stopped and boomed and stopped, and just kept tormenting the cats (not that I like it either). By that time, it was a good thing I had something to look forward to, because I was feeling pretty beaten down by the events of the day.
Happily for my sometimes-tenuous grip on sanity, I had plans Saturday night to go to dinner and a movie with friends. Otherwise, I would have been grasping at straws for good things about the day, those lack-of-bad-news items like, I didn't have a headache, or, the vet didn't have anything bad to say about Harold beyond the usual (he shouldn't gain any weight). While these are not bad things, it was still nice to have an actively pleasant evening after such a day.
After a nice crepe dinner, we saw Waitress, which was deemed enjoyable by all three of us. And in my case, quite a relief after the day I had. Thank heaven days like those don't come too often.