Gigantor Post #2
Another long (frustrating) time without a post! But we’ve been so busy you would hardly believe it. So I’m going to tell you about it so that you can believe it. But I have to warn you, this post is more tragedy than comedy!
So let’s see, so after the last post, Sara’s family came to visit including her uncle Junior. Man could he paint! It was unbelievable. In the time I took to put a second coat on the living room, he put 2 coats on each of the hallways plus the family room. I seriously didn’t know it was possible to paint that fast. So we ended up getting every single room painted, even some of the rooms we weren’t sure if we were going to paint or not. We also got the first of the curtains that Sara’s mom made hung up (dining room) and got the chair rail put up in the dining room. The place looks SO awesome now! And Sara’s parents picked up the crib and chair for the baby’s room and put together the shelves we bought, so that was the first room that really looked finished. It is nice to see it all put together, it looks pretty good. Sara’s parents also bought a bed for the guest room, which I was really excited about. I had been saying to Sara that I really wanted to get a bed because I feel bad that guests have to sleep on an air mattress. So I was really glad when they offered to buy it because I am excited to have an actual guest bedroom.
Unfortunately, all the progress that was made and all the positive energy that was being generated was sort of sucked out when we found out Sunday morning that Sara’s car had been broken in to. They broke the back window, unlocked the doors and tried to hotwire it. I’m not sure why it was unsuccessful, but the thieves ended up stealing a car across the block. So in a way we were lucky because they didn’t steal her car and they didn’t break into my car which was only a few cars away. On the other hand we had a lot going on already and now we had to deal with this broken out window. And when they tried to hotwire the car they messed up the wiring or something, so we couldn’t start the car anymore. I think the worst part about it though was that I started feeling like it was unsafe there and I started wondering if we had made a mistake buying this condo in this neighborhood. I’ve been sort of worried about it ever since. I’m sure that’s how anybody would feel after something like that happened.
So, Sara’s car wouldn’t start and we had to call the police and then we had to have it towed and we had to call the insurance, etc. What a pain. Plus, we didn’t really need a $250 deductible on top of everything else we were spending right now. Little did I know, that was just the beginning of the hassle on her car. Long story short, I had to call the car place and the insurance adjuster at least every other day. For some unknown reason it took 10 DAYS to fix the car! I was very frustrated by the whole thing and it seemed to all be because of the car place. It was the WORST. Ugh.
So anyway, everybody was coming the next weekend to help us move, so we had to spend a lot of the week packing. It was sort of hard though because you get home from a long day of work and then you eat and then you don’t really feel like packing. So Friday, I was just leaving work and I got in an accident!!! Unbelievable. It wasn’t my fault. I had just turned out from work and I was driving on a two lane road when a guy who was at a stop sign on the cross-road tried to make it across in front of me. He said that he didn’t see me. So my front right bumper smashed into his rear right bumper. My car was pretty much okay, I just bent up my bumper, hood and front right quarter panel and broke out my headlight. His car was pretty bad and had to b towed from the scene. I just couldn’t believe this was happening with the move that weekend and Sara’s car (still) in the shop. Yet another police report to fill out, another call to insurance, etc. My car should be covered under his insurance, but they say that they can’t do anything until they decide who is at fault and they can’t do that until they get his side of the story. So here we are more than a week later and they are still “trying to get in contact with the insured” and I’m driving around with a car that some times smells like wires burning if I forget and accidentally use the right turn signal. Just one more thing, you know?
We had been on the fence about whether we should get an alarm system or not, but having Sara’s car broken into kind of put us over the top. So we had two alarm companies come out to the house. The guy from Brinks was awesome, and their product was cheaper than we expected. The guy didn’t even mention trying to sell anything to us, he just walked around and worked with us to figure out what we would need. So we felt pretty good about stuff when he left. The ADT guy on the other hand…now that was a different story. He was the worst! First off he told us it would take 45 minutes and it took an hour and FIFITY minutes! Second off, he spent at least an hour talking to us including starting to price out some stuff before he even looked at the home! And it felt like the Brinks guy was really trying to figure out what we needed, but the ADT guy was trying to upsell us on everything. So finally he was like, “Okay, I just need your credit card numbers…” and we were like, “Whoaaaa there buddy. We’re not making a decision today.” That’s when he flipped out and got desperate. We couldn’t get him to leave. He was pulling out every trick in the sales book up to and including trying to guilt us (“I don’t understand, we agreed on the price range before we started, I thought we had an agreement, I just don’t understand.”) but there was no way we were signing up right at that moment. Especially since it was like twice the price of Brinks. Now there were some features of the ADT service that we liked, but the more the salesman refused to leave and tried to hold us hostage in our own house, the less I wanted to give him any money! Finally we pretty much shoved him out the door. Maybe those high pressure sales tactics worked in the past, but I don’t know why anybody would think they would work today. I mean seriously, the guy pretty much just talked his company out of making a decent slice of dough.
Next up came the big move day, and I have to say, it went a lot faster than I expected! I guess part of it was having a lot of help to move; I usually don’t have much help. I think the worst was when I moved to Philly and it was only my dad and me to unload everything in like blistering heat. So this time we had 10 people I think! My mom and dad both came, but I don’t think it was weird. They even went and got coffee together! I guess that was weird. Anyway, my dad forced us to take over like 5 loads in his truck the night before, so we had a lot of the small stuff moved by the time we got the truck the next day. My brother actually rented a car to come and help and came from a bachelor’s party the night before, so I was concerned that it was going to be too much for him, but we appreciated the help because that was one more person that could carry heavy stuff. Also my boss showed up and he was a machine! He just jumped right in getting the heaviest stuff and definitely made a big difference. Also, he brought us a pan of lasagna! Very thoughtful, since our kitchen was all packed up! So I picked up the truck at 9 but they opened at 9, so there was a big line. I probably got back at like 9:45, we took one load in the truck, and we returned the truck at noon. Also, our realtor Joe brought a pizza over on move day! That was also really thoughtful too, especially since the closing was a month ago.
So, in order to support the alarm system, we decided to get an actual land line phone for the first time in years. Since we have Comcast cable and Internet, we figured we would try out their new VoIP for the phone system. It seemed like a no-brainer since I’ve been a loyal Comcast customer for like 8 years over 3 states. But I know what you’re thinking, what about all those problems you had when you got your Comcast setup before? Well, this time the problems started up right away. I had to call back 3 days in a row and each day I got a different story. Everyday the order would be messed up in some way. Finally, the last guy I talked to (who was extremely rude) told me I couldn’t get the special deal because I was transferring service not getting new service. Finally I was just fed up with Comcast! So I took a look around at what my options were and realized I could save a TON of money by going with AT&T and Dish Network. Kind of stupid on Comcast’s part because I was ready to sign up for the long haul. And the best part is, with Dish Network I get NFL Network and my beloved Sci-fi channel, probably the two best channels on earth and two channels I didn’t get with Comcast. I think for the combination Internet and T.V. we are saving something like $30 per month. Per month! And that’s not even including some of the specials and promotions we got. Some people say (and some Comcast billboards say) it is stupid to get a satellite dish in Chicago because the weather knocks the satellite signal out all the time. Other people say you only lose it in the worst storms. I guess we’ll see, but the people who say it is generally acceptable seem more reliable than the naysayers.
But alas, it looks like the new master is a lot like the old master. My appointment was from 8 – 12 Friday morning, but it was actually 2 appointments. The satellite guy showed up first, and let me say he really earned his installation fee! (of course we’re not paying it thanks to a promotion, but still) So it took quite a while to get everything all set up. By the time he left it was about noon and I hadn’t heard from the AT&T guy. So I called and it turns out, they had set up my order to be installed between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.!! It is ridiculous enough to expect someone to be home for 4 hours, much less 12 hours! And while they were at it, the person didn’t set up the order for the Internet, only the phone! ::sigh:: Of course not. Of course. So I had to call off work for the day and the guy ended up getting here around 1:30. It only took a few minutes to set up the phone, but it took quite a while to get the TiVo and everything all set up to work with the satellite. I also had a lot of time to unpack and pretty much unpacked everything there was to unpack.
So, since I wasn’t going to work I had time to return our cable modem to Comcast. So I drove out to the Comcast office and there was a HUGE line! I had to park 2 blocks away and the line went all through the office and then out across the parking lot! I couldn’t even believe it, I thought it was going to be a quick trip. The problem was that Comcast is switching over to all digital and everyone has to come and pick up digital boxes. It ended up being quicker than I thought it was going to be (only about an hour) because they actually had 6 lines open on the inside. Everybody was angry, but the ironic thing was that I was already fed up with Comcast enough to cancel my service BEFORE I had to stand in that line!
Now here is the part you’re not going to believe! Saturday morning we were going to go to the 57th street art festival (which is really awesome, we will definitely continue to go every year) and we tried to start Sara’s car and it wouldn’t start! It did the same thing it had been doing before we took it in to get it fixed!! I couldn’t believe it, I was so upset. Like there were so many things going on and I thought that was one frustration that I could cross off the list! And the more I thought about it the more upset I got, so I had to struggle to keep it from ruining the whole weekend.
In order to get our mind off of the car, we decided on Sunday to go to IKEA to buy some shelves to create a pantry out of one closet, which is an awesome idea by the way (not mine) and the shelves look awesome! We freed up a bunch of space in the kitchen too as well as found some spots for some stuff that we didn’t know what to do with. The thing is, the closet isn’t that big, but it is very, very tall. So we bought these 7’ shelves and it is working great. The only problem was, we had to fit them into my car! We managed to fit them in with the back seats down and the passenger seat as far forward as it could go and leaning forward. Sara couldn’t fit her big pregnant belly in there, so she had to drive. It was the most uncomfortable contorted position with my head pressed against the windshield and my legs screwed up to one side. The funny part was that anybody driving by my car wouldn’t be able to see the shelves (they weren’t assembled yet) they would just see me pressed up against the glass like some kind of weirdo! But I survived the hour car ride and it was worth it, because the shelves are awesome. We also bought some other needed things like door mats, trash cans, etc. This place is really coming together and I like it more and more every day! We still have a lot of things we’d like to get though.
I also managed to watch some awesomely bad movies on sci-fi. Just like old times! The theme was heat movies and I think the worst one I saw was about a volcano opening up under New York city. Well it might have been a tie between that and this one about these snakes made of fire staring Xander from Buffy.
So Monday I get to work and I find out that my account had been shut off!! Agh! I thought I was going to have a break down! It just seemed like I was cursed or something. Everything was just going wrong and piling up, between both the cars, then Sara’s car still being broken, the problems with AT&T, the Internet still not working…man.
So since then, things have started to come back in order. My account at work was quickly restored. Sara’s car was towed back to the dealership and then fixed. They admitted it was their fault and there was no charge. According to the UPS website, we are supposed to get our DSL modem tomorrow (and then I can post this!). If that goes according to plan, then the only thing left to resolve is my car. I plan on driving Sara’s until I hear back from State Farm. It would be nice if that was resolved soon, but I am not hopeful.