We can’t take all of our furniture with us. Or to be completely honest some of our furniture is past it’s “best before” date. We’ve had it since the days when we were renting a 2 bedroom flat and relatives pitched in to offload the furniture they no longer wanted to give us a good start after we shacked up.
The furniture (an entertainment unit with a gap in the middle for a TV and an antique style lounge) had rested for 14 years in our ‘formal’ lounge room. Which is the room we seldom venture into, apart from on Christmas morning for the present unwrapping business. It housed these two pieces of furniture – neither of which I was very fond of – as well as my husband’s football trophies and photos – none of which I am fond of at all.
So, I think we’ve established that the furniture in question is out of date, but it was still in good condition so I contacted Vinnies to come and take the entertainment unit. They turned me down because “it won’t fit a plasma”. I told them I wouldn’t know about that, as I don’t have a plasma In fact I don’t even have digital TV. Or a dishwasher. Or an Ipod/iPhone/iPad.
Next stop was the Salvos. Yep, they’d take it provided it wasn’t damaged. So, the night before pick up hub and I lugged it out to the car port. The truck rolled up and before they were even halfway up the driveway they were shaking their heads.
They have a warehouse full of them, apparently. Being a regular at Op Shops I wanted to yell at them that may because the prices they put on the furniture they are given for FREE is to high, and if they lowered it they’d probably shift stuff. But I held my tongue.
Just the night before we’d agreed to get rid of the formal lounge we were left by my husband’s late grandparents. It’s at least 40 years old, velvet cushions, heavy arm and frame. Quite lovely, if you’re into that sort of thing and still in pretty good shape, or so I thought. So I asked them to step inside and take the lounge off my hands.
They pulled every cushion off the lounge (and didn’t replace them) and the young bloke of the pair pointed at every mark and decided it wasn’t for them. It seems they won’t take furniture with marks. Erm, does anyway own a lounge that DOESN’T have marks? And if you had a lounge without marks would you be giving it to the Salvos?
The unit I was neither here nor there about. But with the lounge I invited these two men into my home, to look at my belongings. They prodded, they poked, they peered, and then they turned their noses up. And non too politely, either. Sure I didn’t want it anymore, but this is my HOME, my castle and some respect in the way they expressed their thoughts wouldn’t have gone astray.
Then, after sneering at my lounge they looked around the house and (probably in jest but I was royally pissed off by now and in no mood for laughs) picked out furniture they would happily take! The bloody cheek of them!
I was hurt.
But we really did need to get rid of these things, so I heeded the advice of my friend Judy and listed them – for free – on Gumtree, a free online classifieds. Just like the Trading Post, but better, as it’s free!
By the next morning I had 2 nibbles on the entertainment unit. By lunchtime, the lounge had found a new home with a lovely and very appreciative couple. The unit was still sitting under the car port by late afternoon, when my next-door neighbour popped her head over the fence and said she’d take it. So, we lugged it in there* and now our formal lounge room is bare and my furniture has gone to worthy new homes.
I will never donate to Salvos or Vinnies again. To small independent oppies, yes. But those two? Never again.
* I could do a whole other post about the carrying that damn unit into her house. About how she stopped a woman (a stranger!) out on her daily walk to assist. And how the Little Missy got about 6 feet from her front door and hollered “What’s that smell!? Yuck! Mum, what’s that smell!”. The smell was the sinus clearing stench of cat piss. Thankfully, I had the back end of the unit and did not have to enter the premises.