Of course I have embarrassed my Pinay Princess (again) and she has told me in no uncertain terms to let the matter drop. What's the "matter"? We're at Mandaue Foam shopping for a new mattress and wardrobe. Our sales associate had already quoted us a delivery truck charge of P150 pesos(3.48 US Dollars.) But now the cashier is telling us that the charge really should be P400 pesos (9.29 USD.) I'm not pleased, and I'm getting ready to walk away from the deal.
The cashier calls over a trio of guys standing nearby and holds a short conference with them. We're advised that the delivery charge for our new mattress and wardrobe would be P150 as quoted to us originally. Now that is what I call good customer service. I take out my wallet to pay.
My asawa questioned when the delivery would be made. The next day, Monday, but no time frame could be promised. Didn't matter to me, I'm retired. If our new furniture would be hauled over to us on "Filipino Time" did not concern me one bit. I've mellowed a bit since retiring to the Philippines over two years ago, and small details that would matter to me back in the States do not worry me as much now.
But Monday morning passed without any word on when the delivery truck would arrive. I was exhausted from our furniture shopping the day before, and as I have just indicated, I frankly could care less when the stuff was hauled over. We had gone to our land management office earlier in the day to obtain the necessary permit to bring in any appliances or furniture, but due to a national holiday the office was closed.
The security guards posted throughout our subdivision had to have that paperwork or they would not let any delivery vehicles pass through the gate. A guy perched on the steps leading to the land management company told my asawa that if we talked to our security guards they could make a note on their log to allow the delivery truck to pass though, and we could obtain our permit the next day. We thanked the man and walked the 30 minutes to the main station where our armed security guards were posted.
We were advised that we would have to call a number to get the OK from one of the subdivision land management officials. My asawa made the call and we're given permission for the delivery. Just had to obtain the necessary permit the next day as advised earlier. I slipped a 100 peso note (2.32) to one of the guards to help facilitate the delivery. Told him to buy some bottles of Red Horse. He thanked me and smiled and assured me that everything would be taken care of. I had no doubt.
Walked back home and my stressed spouse was becoming more agitated about the delivery. She tried to call a number on our receipt for Mandaue Foam but could not reach anyone. When she pressed an "Option 4" on the automated menu, she reached someone who said that they were not Mandaue but a different business. I searched online for the contact numbers and found the same land line numbers my asawa had just called. But there also was a mobile number for someone named "Bing." But no one answered that phone. Reminded me of the trouble I had reaching the local Smart Bro office at SM City recently.
As my wife continued to make calls to the furniture company she was becoming increasingly frustrated. I decided it was a good time to take a walk over to the main entrance and check with the guard that I had spoken to earlier in the day. At least it would give me an excuse to get out of the house for awhile as we waited for the delivery truck.
After waiting for a few hours and chatting with our armed security guards I walked back to our home. It was 5 pm and still no new mattress or wardrobe. At least I was told by my new friends by the front gate, that Mandaue Foam made deliveries as late as 6 pm to our subdivision but that didn't please my asawa whose foul mood had worsened. I tried to call the main numbers and the mobile for Bing with no results. Six pm arrived but no furniture did. I turned on the air con in our bedroom and gave up any hope of our furniture arriving that day.
In frustration, my Pinay Princess was preparing to send a text message to the cell phone contact number advising the company if no delivery was made today as promised then just cancel the order, and we would be in their store tomorrow to receive a refund. I concurred with her decision (I was in no position to disagree with my agitated asawa at this point; she was really angry.) I decided to go to our living room and as I looked out the window saw a Mandaue Foam delivery truck pass by. It was 6:10 pm. I run outside in my house slippers (not my outdoor ones, this was an emergency) and yell out to the driver who has stopped a few houses away from our home.
The truck backs up to our house, and my spouse, unaware of what is transpiring as she has remained in the confines of our air con bedroom, has already sent the aforementioned text message to Mandaue Foam. I tell her the truck has arrived. I go to show the guys where to put the furniture when my asawa's phone rings. It is a representative from our furniture company. My wife advises the lady on the phone that the furniture has just been delivered and to ignore the text message she just sent. She explained to the sales person that she was extremely frustrated in not being able to reach anyone all day concerning the time our delivery truck would arrive.
The delivery guys apologized for the trouble and confirmed that they were not able to reach their office throughout the day either, but quickly unloaded their truck and leave for their next delivery. I go back into the air con comfort of our bedroom and asked my wife how she's doing now. "I'm OK now but I'm still frustrated about not being able to reach them all day. And the only time they responded was ten minutes later after I sent that message after threatening to cancel the order. I guess I've become too 'Americanized'."
Funny, I'm becoming more "Filipino."