Part One: Last Week
I place a fairly large Amazon order to fill in some of the last things we really, definitely need for the baby. More cloth diapers, more diaper covers, a wet bag to hold dirty diapers, the special laundry detergent you use to wash cloth diapers. Most of it revolves around diapers. But there are other things too! Many things! Many things that babies need! I hit "place order" and feel very accomplished. Now we'll have all the absolute essentials covered and Free Super Save Shipping to boot. I ship the order to Joel's office, since we can't receive large packages at our house and I don't feel like carrying a big fat Amazon box 3/4 mile home from my office. Look at me, thinking ahead! Actually learning my lesson after having our crib shipped to my office!
Part Two: Wednesday night
Joel asks what the status of the Amazon order is, as it has not yet arrived at his office. I look in my email and forward him the tracking information saying that the order has shipped in two parts, one via UPS and the other via US Postal Service. Oh, and upon further inspection it seems the Postal Sevice portion has already been delivered! Woohoo, baby stuff!
Part Three: Wednesday night, two minutes later
"You used my new office address, right?" Joel asks. As in, not the old one that his company moved out of many months ago, whose address no longer technically exists?
Part Four: Wednesday night, two minutes and five seconds later
Part Five: Thursday morning
Joel checks his office to see if by some miracle the packages have arrived there. After all, they did set up address forwarding with the post office and they get a shitload of UPS packages and the driver knows about their office move. Maybe they made it despite the wrong address! SHUT UP, MAYBE.
Realizing that the Postal Service package is most likely a completely lost cause, I dedicate myself to saving the UPS package. I check online: out for delivery. OK, so it's not too late! Surely UPS can call the driver and tell him oopsie, actually DON'T bring that non-existent old address, bring it to the new address! It's not far from the old one! In fact, Joel insists that since they get so many UPS deliveries the guy might actually just recognize the old address and know that it's really supposed to go to the new one. SHUT UP, HE MIGHT.
Yeah, no. Again.
The UPS phone rep insists they can't do anything until an actual delivery attempt is made. If the driver is unable to deliver the package, then I can call and change the address. UPS suggests I call Amazon and try to change the address with them.
Part Six: Later Thursday morning
To avoid the shame of having my entire office overhear me try to navigate my way out of this bungled mess, I log into Amazon's chat help. A nice Amazon lady asks how she can help me. I explain the situation and beg her to change the delivery address. Sorry, but she can't change the address once an order has shipped. She can't even put a note in the system or do anything to somehow alert the UPS guy that some dumbass used an outdated, now nonexistent shipping address. I am about to cry. Joel's old office is now just an abandoned space. The city is doing a ton of construction right outside it. Our baby stuff is either going to be run over by a bucket loader or stolen by hooligans.
However, the Amazon lady continues, she can issue a refund for the entire order. Then I can re-order all the items and use the correct shipping address. Would that be OK?
Um, yes, I guess that would be "OK", if by "OK", you mean extremely generous considering this entire problem is 100% my dumbass fault. She does that. Refunds the entire order. I... really don't know what to say.
Part Seven: Thursday, lunchtime
I get in the car and drive to the site where Joel's office used to be on the off chance that the Postal Service package is still lying on the sidewalk or was somehow delivered to the company next door. There is, predictably, no parking downtown. I illegally park in the area reserved for the construction workers. As I walk by their cars, I notice that they ALL have an official-looking permit displayed on their windshield. This is so fucking stupid, I think to myself. Some nice lady from Amazon.com is not going to swoop in and save your ass when you get the car towed. But I'm already halfway to the entrance of the other office, and I'm expecting this whole thing to be a bust anyway. Joel has warned me that neither the security guard nor the loading dock staff at this building are particularly friendly or helpful. But at least I do have a strategy in place: 1) explain the situation, admit it is my fault and beg forgiveness, 2) look at pregnant as possible, and 3) cry, if necessary. But still, I am fairly certain I'll be back out in thirty seconds after they shut me down, and the car will be OK for thirty seconds. I hope.
I tell my sob story to the security guard. I am a silly, very pregnant person who forgot to update her Amazon shipping address and has he perchance seen a package -- he interrupts me to say that yes, a package from UPS just came this morning and he took it back to the loading dock. Do I know where that is? No, no I don't. He escorts me back peresonally and introduces me to the loading dock lady, who isn't very friendly but points to a pile of packages. And right on top, there it is! The UPS package! Unharmed! I pick it up and give it a kiss.
Now, there was another package delivered yesterday by the regular postal service, I explain. Do you know where that might be? Oh, says the loading dock lady. That's going to be a problem. That'll be in the mail room. You have to go up there and look for it. I... don't know where that is, I stammer. She rolls her eyes and picks up the phone. I think she's completely dismissed me, but then she hangs up the phone and tells me if I go back out to the front, the security guy will take me up to the mail room.
THANK YOU, I say. I will go right up there in just one second, I just need to stash this in my car [and make sure my car isn't being towed, which by this point I'm freaking out about just a little bit because it's been much longer than thirty seconds and oh god, I saw a city ticket lady one street over on the way in, what the hell was I thinking parking there]. I run (RUN, which I have not done in several months) out to the back entrance of the building, clutching my precious UPS box. The car is still there. The car doesn't have a ticket. I get in and move it into the parking garage, berating myself for not just parking there in the first place. I hate, hate, hate paying for parking (especially because we used to have a free pass to this exact garage, you know, back when Joel used to actually have an office here), but I reason that if all this idiot mistake ends up costing me is $7 for parking (rather than, you know, THE COST OF OUR ENTIRE AMAZON ORDER), I can count myself insanely lucky. I park in the garage and hustle back up to the front door, preparing my saddest, most pathetic pregnant lady face to tell my story to the mail room employees. Except I never even get to the mail room, because in the time it took me to move the car it seems that Mr. Security Guard has gone to the mail room for me, retrieved the package, and has it waiting for me at the front door. THANK YOU, I tell him. Thank you so much. Thank you.
I go back to the parking garage, again feeling slightly irritated that I will now have paid $7 to park in the garage for less than five minutes, but WHATEVER. I should consider myself fortunate! Both packages found! Amazon was willing to refund my money! I fixed my bonehead mistake! THIS IS A GOOD DAY. I insert my credit card into the machine at the garage entrance, pay my $7, and take my little ticket back. As I get in the car I look at the clock and see that not only did I succeed in retrieving both packages and not getting the car towed, but I'm going to make it back to work in less than an hour.
I pull up to the garage exit and go to insert my paid ticket, except... it's not in my hand. Or in my purse. Or in the car console. Or... anywhere. I illegally back up so I'm not blocking the exit lane and start to go through my purse methodically. I cannot have lost this ticket between the machine downstairs and my car. It's just not possible! I didn't go anywhere, stop for anything, put anything down. It HAS to be in here somewhere.
I take everything out of my wallet. I take every paper out of my purse. I look in the glove compartment, under the seat. I get out and look in the trunk, thinking maybe I dropped it when I put the second package back there. No. Ticket.
I hang my head in shame and go into the parking office next to the exit. I lost my ticket, I tell the lady working there. Somehow, between paying the machine and walking to my car I lost my ticket. I just paid. Just now. Two minutes ago. But I can't find my ticket. I paid with a credit card, is there anyway she can look it up? I furiously look away from the sign declaring "Lost Tickets Pay Maximum Daily Fee - No Exceptions".
She holds out her hand for my credit card and walks back to her computer. She scrolls through many screens. I stand there for at least five minutes. She obviously cannot find it. I resign myself to paying the $22 maximum fee, on top of the $7 I already paid, reasoning that it's still cheaper than getting the car towed. Or having to pay for an entire lost Amazon order. Things could be a whole lot worse.
OK, I see you, she says suddenly, handing back my credit card. Just pull up to the gate here and I'll let you through. Thank you, I tell her. Thank you so, so, so much.
We are not going to talk about how I had to park in the scary annex garage when I got back to work because there were no spaces in the regular garage, and then I spent fifteen minutes trying to find my damn way out of there. No, we're not going to discuss how the exit door had a sign that said "Push Hard - Door Will Open" but I pushed as hard as I could and the damn door did NOT open, so I had to go back up the stairs, back to the car, and walk all the way through the annex garage and the regular garage to get back out to the street.
We're also not going to talk about how I after work, I 1) forgot my purse in my office, and 2) was stopped by a kind lady on my way out of the bathroom who told me that my skirt was a little bit caught in my bag. Which was her nice way of saying "your skirt is tucked into your underwear."