Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Entry 1: Part 2

Part 1 below.

So housing is really cheap here. In fact, it is 38% cheaper. I found a decently nice duplex (which is right down the street from Walmart) and I like it pretty well so far. I moved in right before Christmas. I didn't want to, but I also didn't want to keep paying to live in the crappy hotel I was staying in. Due to bad timing, the utility company would not turn on the heat until the Monday after Christmas, so it was VERY cold for my first leg of the journey . Not to mention that I couldn't get a moving truck that weekend because of the holiday. So I was sleeping on the floor in the cold (see "Survivorman" below).

The landlord put in new carpet and fresh paint before I moved in, so that was nice. What's not so nice is that the carpets shed like mad! Since I was sleeping on the floor, I would wake up covered in these tiny, shiny, gold fibers all over my body. They got everywhere, including my clothes so I'd have to go into my new job looking like I put on glitter or something. Clearly something had to be done. I went to Walmart and got a vacuum cleaner that had good ratings on walmart.com and proceeded to fix this mess once and for all. Well about 1/3 the way through the room the vacuum cleaner was full - completely full - of these stupid hairs.

The PowerForce was doing its damn job

I don't think that top compartment is even supposed to have anything in it, let alone a million little fibers (funny reference lololololololol). So I cleaned it out and continued vacuuming the room. I decided it would be fun to collect all the sheddings and show my friends how cool I was, but I gave up after two loads when I started getting pissed off. 

Seriously, that's a LOT of hairs for like 60 square feet!

In the middle of my third attempt, the vacuum started whining a lot and the motor was slowing down, obviously not happy with such a daunting task on its first day of duty. It eventually stopped picking up hairs and the room was filling with a burning smell, so I opened up the instructions and proceeded to go through the troubleshooting section. All airways were clear, the filters were clean, and the spinny thing was spinning. According to the manual, the next step is to return the product, and considering the vacuum wasn't even a day old I bagged up the vacuum, grabbed the receipt and went back to Walmart to wait in the returns line. The week after Christmas.

Once it was my turn at customer service, I was not greeted kindly, nor celebrated for bringing in the receipt as I expected, but the first thing the cust serv chick did was open the flap on the vacuum box and point to a tiny little message that read "Do not return to the store. Call 1-800-blahblahblah." This message was not on the outside of the package, nor did I see it when I opened the box, so buyer beware I guess. I figured I'd call Bissell and they'd tell me to take it right back, so I called right in the store and they must have heard the busy background because they advised me to go home so I could troubleshoot the problem. After many grrrs and groans later, I decided to go home and call. 

After going through the troubleshooting process on the phone, I was told I'd have to drive 2 hours to bring it to a vacuum dealership to get it fixed. All for a >$50 vacuum cleaner! So I asked why I couldn't just return it to the store. after all, I had the receipt. She said "oh, well if it's within 90 days you can return the product to the store. This number is for products outside the 90 day window." More grrrs. I called up Walmart and (in a not-so-friendly manner) told the phone answerer my situation and she said, "well I don't know why the customer service associate didn't accept the return, bring it back in, it should be no problem." 

I packed it back up and waited in line again, and got a different person behind the counter. She tried to pull the same crap, but eventually a manager came out and after lots of unnecessary calling around I finally got my refund. Phew. Not so happy with Walmart's return policy. 

After all that I thought I'd pick up a shower curtain rod because I'd been taking showers without one. If you've never had to do this, I don't recommend it. It's not very relaxing trying to angle your body just right so water doesn't splash all over the place and at the same time cleanse your body. So I went to Lowe's (after decided against conducting any more business with Walmart) to get my curtain rod. It was a bit pricier but probably worth it; their customer service couldn't be worse than what I just experienced. I got home and the stupid curtain rod was broken. Grrr....

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