wings and things

Saying ‘I love you!’ to a stranger

on July 20, 2012

Okay, I don’t do this all the time but today a woman behind a counter served me with a smile even though she could see the desperate, psycho look in my eyes.

“This is a mobile phone,” I began (which, in hindsight, seems a rather obvious thing to say as I was in a mobile phone shop).

She smiled, patiently and asked, “And….?”

“Well we bought it from you guys and it belongs to my husband who is in a nursing home and it’s supposed to be easy to operate but he can’t answer it before the five rings and I want the message thing eradicated and I have brought it back twice and rung all of those numbers and followed all of the prompts but I still can’t get the stupid thing to ring more than five times and all of his family and mine are going mad because nobody can get through to him and twice the stupid message my son put on my husband’s phone has been eradicated but it keeps returning like some sort of phone ghost and….”

“Would you like me to take a look at the phone?” she asked calmly.

“Yes, okay,” I said uncalmly, “but we have been here before and done this before and honestly I am really going insane and people are getting angry with me because they can’t get through to my husband even though I have changed all the settings and my brilliant son has altered all of the thingys and why won’t it work?” By now, Ming, having had a nice chat with someone he bumped into, was at my side whispering to me that I was getting a bit loud.

During my little rant (and I wasn’t really that loud), I had half noticed that the woman serving me was pressing buttons on her phone, our phone, a computer, another phone, and another computer, at such astonishing speed that for a moment I thought she had 50 fingers. And then she handed me the phone, demonstrated how it would now ring out before cutting into the stupid message bank thing, and my whole body wilted with relief that finally this ongoing problem was solved.

But, just before I decided to smile back at this woman who I now felt resembled an angel, I said, “But we’ve done this before and it reverted back to the same problem, so how do we know it’s going to work for sure this time?”

“Oh,” she said, “I have the code, so it’s quite simple. You won’t have any more problems with this,” she said, again handing me Anthony’s phone and glancing at Ming in a way that indicated that (a) she’d had enough of us, and (b) she admired him for coping with me (yes, I  really did see that kid-versus-parent-empathy, flick of the eye-lash exchange between them).

OMG – the phone was fixed? After all my struggles with it? A miracle.

“I LOVE YOU!” I whooped at the woman who had served me, and she smiled with the joy of her job and waved us goodbye and then I let out another whoop of joy as Ming and I left the shop to go and take the phone back to Anthony.

49 responses to “Saying ‘I love you!’ to a stranger

  1. We await the proof of the pudding. Wonder woman no doubt had a story to tell that night 😉

  2. Rhonda says:

    Whoop Whoop! 🙂

  3. fingers crossed. Hope the phone doesn’t revert back to previous settings! I’ve said I love you to total strangers more than I’d care to admit!

  4. pixilated2 says:

    Julie, I have on a few occasions been at the same frustration level and told complete strangers I loved them when they saved the day. I have also blessed a few. Truly, I think, when faced by a tigress, that they would rather be told they were loved or blessed than the alternative. 😉

  5. what a relief- hope it works

  6. camsgranny says:

    I can so picture you in this situation!

  7. terry1954 says:

    oh my gosh, this is scary, because i act the exact same way, in fact, if any of my kids are with me, and they know what i am about to do, they run to another department and wait

  8. victoriaaphotography says:

    Good Grief. I think I heard a similar story……and it came out of my own mouth when my old mobile phone got taken back to the shop (in desperation).

    Only I didn’t say “I love you”. I think I said thankyou, thankyou, thankyou a zillion times.

  9. dcwisdom says:

    I remember that feeling – although I said that to my doctor that delivered my second child. Love feelings flow at such odd times and to such odd people.

  10. Robyn Lee says:

    Well certainly you and I could be sisters… would have likely behaved exactly like you and seems completely normal behavior to me 🙂 Guess I forget strangers are strangers!!! And hey – if she fixed that phone – even more acceptable reaction 🙂 Fingers crossed this is the end of the ringing phone saga for you and Ants !!xo

  11. I know whereof you speak! Just went through the frustration of trying to set up a regular cordless phone. So many buttons to push and sequences to follow, and a lot of guesswork on top of that. Who needs all that stuff?! How about just, “Ring, ring, ring. Hello. Talk, talk, talk. Goodbye”?

    • jmgoyder says:

      I know – when I asked the telephone company if we could have an ordinary phone as you describe here they looked at me as if I were from another planet!

  12. janechese says:

    Ha Ha love the story with all its nuances and can empathize with the doubt about the phone not working.My mom could never get to her phone in time when she was in the nursing home and couldn’t operate the Walkman-too complicated for her.Maybe if we had extended the rings…

  13. Judith Post says:

    It’s hard to predict what stress and great relief will bring out in us. An “I love you” sounds entirely plausible.

  14. Those cell phones have a mind of their own! Good luck with this fix, hopefully it’s permanent.

  15. Jo-Anne says:

    Yes sometimes when you go into the store and talk to someone about your phone and they say it’s fixed it will do what you want and they show that it is and then you leave and the next day damn thing isn’t working right again…………and you want to go back and throw the phone at thme and ask if they really have any idea what they are doing……………or is that just me…………

  16. Paws To Talk says:

    That sounds worth an I love you.

  17. Fergiemoto says:

    There was a lot of built-up frustration. I can relate to the feelings you had when the problem was FIXED!

    • jmgoyder says:

      Now that it is fixed and Anthony is mostly able to answer the phone I am wondering why nobody helped me before (telecommunication people I mean) – argh!

  18. ltpen315 says:

    Yay!! Glad you got your problem fixed. I had to call my carrier last week because of a problem I was having. They tried a few things and finally told me I needed to buy a new phone. I was not happy!! A few days later I happened upon the fix to the problem. I swera if I remembered the name of the person I talked to at the company, believe me I don’t think I would be telling her I loved her!!!

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